Make It Better: Take Action to Stop Bullying

Make It Better: Take Action to Stop Bullying

Beth Teper headshotBy now you’ve seen the news coverage of several teenagers who completed suicide after experiencing harassment and being socially ridiculed or outcast.  We extend our deepest condolences to the families of Caleb NoltFelix SaccoRaymond ChaseHarrison Chase BrownAsher BrownTyler ClementiSeth WalshCody J. ParkerBilly Lucas, and Justin Aaberg. We also extend our sympathies to to the family of Victoria Carmen a transgender woman who was murdered last week.

These losses are powerful reminders of the undue violence our families and many communities face on a daily basis. Yet the massive public response generated so far is a positive and encouraging turn of events.

As people with lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or queer parents, we know first-hand what it’s like to be the target of discrimination, harassment, and bullying or to be left out and ignored. When LGBTQ people and families are under political or personal attack, students with LGBTQ parents are often in the spotlight and face increased bullying at school – in class, at lunch, on the playground or field, or via the internet. It can be extraordinarily isolating and challenging to be singled out or made fun of.  However, when we connect with peers who share our experience we realize our difference is our strength and are empowered to make change.

We want young people to have learning environments that are free from harassment and discrimination and, most of all, celebrate and welcome everyone.

We can make it better now, not just wait or hope things will get better, by sharing our stories, connecting with a community of our peers, and taking action to create change. Here’s how:

1. Read and share these Tips for Making Classrooms Safer with your teacher.

2. Make a video about your family and what you are doing to Make It better, then upload it to youtube. Share your link with COLAGE, Make It Better Project, and PBS POV This Is My Family.  

3. Attend your local COLAGE chapter events or form a local chapter.

4. Read the new book Let’s Get This Straight: The Ultimate Handbook for People with LGBTQ Parents, chock-full of resources to help make your life and your community a better place.

5. Encourage your local school board members, state legislators, to help pass the Safe Schools Improvement Act (SSI). SSI will amend the Safe and Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act to include bullying and harassment prevention programs.

In solidarity,

Beth Teper

Beth Teper
Executive Director

P.S. Be sure to let COLAGE know about your video too so we can post it on our blog and facebook page. E-mail Mark Snyder, Communications Coordinator at for tips about how to record or share your video.

2017-02-20T11:45:26-05:00 October 14th, 2010|

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