NYS Senator Eric Adams and the Senate Majority Conference mark the signing into law of S1987B, Senator Duane’s legislation to prevent discrimination and harassment against students on school grounds.
The “Dignity For All Students Act,” designed to provide students with a safe and nurturing school environment that is conducive to learning, prohibits all harassment or discrimination, including intolerance based on race, color, national origin, ethnic group, religion, disability, weight, sexual orientation, or gender. The legislation defines “harassment” as the creation of a hostile environment by conduct, verbal threats, intimidation, or abuse that would unreasonably interfere with educational performance, opportunities, benefits, or physical or emotional well-being, or cause fear for physical safety.
NYS Senator Eric Adams states: “Students require a safe and supportive learning environment. They must focus on academic and personal growth, and threats, harassment, and discrimination are inappropriate in and counterproductive to an educational setting.
“Stigmatized students often are truant, engage in high risk behaviors such as drug/alcohol use, and attempt suicide, and a school environment must be free from the inappropriate behaviors that precipitate such reactions. By prohibiting harassment in public schools and establishing practical measures such as training and model policies, the ‘Act’ is an important attempt to create more nurturing environments in our schools.
“’The Dignity for All Students Act’ promotes courtesy, consideration, and respect among students and their peers and between students and teachers, fostering an atmosphere where learning is primary and disruptions are diminished. Further, it prescribes a code of conduct and a proactive response to harassment and bullying. I enthusiastically support this legislation.”