No government has the right to tell its citizens when or whom to love. The only queer people are those who don’t love anybody. ~ Rita Mae Brown ~
HYDE PARK – The Mediation Center of Dutchess County will kick off National Bullying Prevention Month with a public forum on the issue Oct. 1. The forum, entitled “Bullying Prevention: A Community Conversation,” will start at 6 p.m. at the Henry A. Wallace Center on the Franklin D. Roosevelt Historic Site.
Panelists will include Lizette Hernandez, aide to U.S. Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney, whose district includes parts of Dutchess and Ulster counties; Rob Conlon, chair of the Ulster sub-chapter of GLSEN (Gay Lesbian and Straight Education Network) of the Hudson Valley; Marie Dynes, prevention coordinator of the Dutchess County Department of Mental Hygiene, Meghan Kling, Esq., Legal Services of the Hudson Valley, and Melissa Lawson, principal of the Ralph R. Smith Elementary School in Hyde Park. Students, faculty and staff at the school have undergone anti-bullying training provided by the Mediation Center.
Questions that will be posed and answered at the forum include:
- What is the difference between conflict and bullying?
- What are the best practices to prevent and respond to bullying?
- What community resources are available?
Mediation Center Executive Director Jody Miller said the forum was organized in response to numerous requests from members of the public to learn more about how bullying affects our children and how it can be combated and prevented. “Since we began the Anti-Bullying Initiative in 2012, we’ve learned much about best practices in bullying prevention as well as the myths and misunderstandings. We, in collaboration with our partners, look forward to sharing this information with our community in response to the many requests we’ve had about bullying.
For more information, contact Miller or Honey Minkowitz, Bullying Prevention Coordinator at 845-47-7213, or visit the organization’s website at “Mediation Centre of Dutches County”.
Article By Kathy Welsh September 29, 2015.