GLAAD launches countdown to Spirit Day 2016!

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The degree and kind of a man’s sexuality reach up into the ultimate pinnacle of his spirit ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

pink-happy-heart-smiley-emoticonToday Sept 15, 2016 GLAAD launched the official countdown to Spirit Day, the largest and most visible campaign in the world working to advance acceptance of LGBTQ youth. Spirit Day takes place on October 20th and inspires millions around the world to wear purple or ‘go purple’ on their social media accounts, creating a united stand against bullying and in support of LGBTQ youth.

“Since its inception, Spirit Day has brought unparalleled attention to one of the most painful issues that disproportionately affects LGBTQ youthbullying,” said GLAAD President & CEO Sarah Kate Ellis. According to GLSEN’s most recent National School smilie-family-better3Climate Survey, 85% of LGBT students report they have been verbally harassed with 65% percent reporting that they have heard homophobic remarks frequently or often in school. GLSEN also reported that 30% of students missed at least one day of school in a given month because they felt unsafe or uncomfortable in their school environment. Ellis adds, “Young people are our future, and it’s imperative that we empower them to be the leaders of tomorrow. With updated anti-bullying resources in multiple languages, Spirit Day 2016 is sure to reach more youth than ever with messages of acceptance and support.”

Every year, Spirit Day draws the participation and suport of celebrities, corporations, media outlets, sports leagues, schools, faith institutions, national landmarks, and individuals. This year, Spirit Day is made gayheart possible by the generous support of its presenting partners Target and Wells Fargo, official partners, Dow, Google, NBA and WNBA, NFL, and WWE, and supporting partners, American Eagle Outfitters, Barilla, Chobani, Comcast NBCUniversal, Kellogg’s, Kirkland & Ellis, Toyota Financial Services, and Zipcar.

waving_crossed_gay_pride_flags“LGBTQ youth deserve the opportunity to reach their full potential. To be comfortable with and proud of who they are. To be free to be exactly who they were born to be, “said Laysha Ward, Executive Vice President & Chief Corporate Social Responsibility Officer, Target. “Target is excited to be a Spirit Day presenting partner, working with GLAAD to raise awareness around the issue of bullying in the LGBTQ youth community.”

“A child’s true potential should never be diminished by fear,” said John Lake, Wells Fargo’s LGBT segment leader. “We see Spirit Day as a powerful tool to raise awareness of the challenges faced by kids who identify as LGBTQ and to show our solidarity as an ally. We are committed to working alongside GLAAD to help combat bullying and protect LGBTQ youth – an effort that remains at the core of our decades-long commitment to the LGBTQ community.”

smileTo celebrate the countdown to Spirit Day, GLAAD also released crucial anti-bullying resources for educators, parents, and students. GLAAD’s Anti-Bullying Resource Kit provides tools and information teachers the aide in keeping bullying out of the classroom and help both teachers and parents support LGBTQ youth. Additionally, GLAAD released the Spirit Day Kit, which helps people of all ages bring Spirit Day directly to their community, including schools and local media outlets.

Coinciding with National Bullying Prevention Month, Spirit Day began in 2010 after a high untitled-1school student posted the idea to her Tumblr page following the suicide deaths of several LGBTQ and LGBTQ-perceived young people. Previous Spirit Day participants include The White House, The Empire State Building, Britney Spears, Oprah Winfrey, Ellen DeGeneres, Cher, Shaquille O’Neal, Good Morning America, The Today Show, The View, The Talk, The Tonight Show, the NBA, the NFL, Major League Baseball, NASCAR, WWE, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Tumblr, the Las Vegas Strip, and more.

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Spirit Day 2013

GLAAD Presents Spirit Day 2014

PepsiCo launches ‘Purple On!’ 2014

Here’s Why GLAAD Wants You To Go Purple Again For Spirit Day 2015

Visibility club prepares for Spirit Day

Article by Colin Burke, Spirit Day Intern ~ Sept 15, 2016

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The BULLY Project!

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“If they don’t like you for being yourself, be yourself even more.” ~ Taylor Swift

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WE DID IT! ‘UPSTANDER’ IS NOW ADDED TO THE DICTIONARY

classThank you to our partners Change.org, Not in Our School and Facing History and Ourselves, as well as all of the other advocates who supported the campaign to add the word “upstander” to the dictionary. On July 24, 2016 the word was officially added to the Oxford Dictionary!

HEAD BACK TO SCHOOL AS AN UPSTANDER

b-man-project2What would it look like if we had a community of Upstanders heading back to school this fall? Upstanders are the students who choose to speak up, the teachers who reach out, the principals who take new actions in their schools, and the parents who join together to raise awareness about bullying. Through The BULLY Project’s tools and resources that support social emotional learning, as well as creative programs like the Adobe Mural project, we hope to foster more Upstanders in our schools everyday. As we embark on a new school year, let us each take the opportunity to be an Upstander in our own lives and promote Upstanders in our schools and communities.

INTRODUCING THE PHYSICIANS CAMPAIGN

physicians campaignThe BULLY Project is excited to announce a new campaign that will change how physicians treat doctor-emoticonchildren exposed to bullying! On Friday, August 12th, 2016, The Physicians Campaign was introduced at the Federal Summit for Bullyng Prevention in Washington, DC.
Partnered with Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Adminisration (SAMHSA), Federal Partners in Bullying Prevention, StopBullying.gov, The NoBLE (No Bullying Live Empowered) Initiative of Beaumont nurse-smileyChildren’s Hospital, The Physicians Campaign will support medical practitioners throughout the nation through comprehensive tools and resources and an innovative medical educational program that features the film BULLY. Whether a child is a bully, victim, or witness, exposure to bullying can have intensive and sometimes lifelong health consequences, according to national studies. That’s why we are calling on all stakeholders, including you, to join our movement to end bullying! For further information contact info@physicianscampaign.com.
 

WATCH HIGH DIVE HEART: UPSTANDERS IN ACTION

HeadphonesFor those times when we have felt like we just didn’t belong, the new band High Dive Heart has released the song “Misfit” as an anthem that celebrates 10being different. Touring with Colbie Caillat this fall, High Dive Heart has created an new music video that supports The BULLY Project. For every single of “Misfit” purchased, High Dive Heart will donate the proceeds to The BULLY Project. Our new friends at Apple Music have become fans and currently the High Dive Heart single is in the hot tracks section of the iTunes store. Please check out the song below and support our ongoing work!
 

BUY A MISFIT TEE – SUPPORT THE BULLY PROJECT


Click on a shirt to purchase – all proceeds are donated directly to our anti-bullying campaigns.  t-shirts.jpg

PROMOTE UPSTANDERS IN YOUR SCHOOLS

toolkitFrom Sacramento to Milwaukee, schools around the US are gearing up to use the Educator’s DVD and Toolkit in their classrooms this fall! Join the growing number of schools who are using the Educator’s Toolkit to take a stand against bullying in schools. The toolkit comes with resources to help ignite meaningful dialogue and prevent bullying by developing a respectful school community.
 
SPOTLIGHT: UPSTANDERS AT WELSH HILLS SCHOOL IN GRANVILLE, OHIO
Check out how Michelle Lerner, Head of School at Welsh Hills in Granville Ohio is working hard to promote a safe school environment! Last year, students grades 5 – 9 attended a screening of BULLY as part of a wellness unit.
animated-smileys-television-014“All of our students were absolutely silent during the movie and for a few moments afterwards as well. They tried to put themselves in the shoes of some of the children profiled in the movie in order to understand how they might feel,” Lerner said. Welsh Hills recognises that promoting a culture of anti-bullying is a gradual process.
“Our challenges will be in helping students to internalise new attitudes and to recognise negative behaviours in themselves,” she said. This year, Welsh Hills will host a parent education night to screen BULLY and discuss how to recognise bullying, how the school addresses bullying, and how families can support their children at home!
 

CONTRIBUTE TO THE ADOBE BULLY PROJECT MURAL

donateGet creative with your classroom by contributing to the Adobe BULLY Project mural, a digital destination where people can share art, stories, and perspectives about bullying and its impact. Engage sport-handball-smiley-animiert_03_250x250your students in a dynamic and creative medium that allows them to express themselves honestly and create a meaningful dialogue with their peers about bullying. Participating in project-based learning like the BULLY Project Mural brings together social and emotional learning strategies that are aligned with the high-quality academic standards of the Common Core. To learn more about how to bring this activity to your classroom, click here.
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The Bystander Revolution

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I believe that at the end of the century the use of words and general educated opinion will have altered so much that one will be able to speak of machines thinking without expecting to be contradicted. ~ Alan Turing

Bystander Revolution: Colum McCann | Band Together

Worried you’ll bring the bullying on yourself or make the situation worse if you step in? A solution from award-winning author Colum McCann.

Simple acts of kindness, courage, and inclusion anyone can use to take the power out of bullying.

smilie-sign23Bystander Revolution is a website offering practical, crowdsourced advice about simple things individuals can do to defuse bullying and help shift the culture. No matter who you are or what you’re facing, you can find personal stories, suggestions, and encouragement from someone who has dealt with a similar issue. Search by problem or solution to find tips from people who have been targets, people who have been bystanders, and even people who have bullied.

Try one of the ideas. Share one with a friend. You can be of real help right away. And if these ideas spread and become habits, it could change the dynamics forever.

Mission and History

hugBystander Revolution was founded by author and parent MacKenzie Bezos to create a source of direct, peer-to-peer advice about practical things individuals can do to help defuse bullying. The ultimate goal is the discussion and spread of simple habits of kindness, courage, and inclusion.

tabletThe site launched in April of 2014 with unscripted content from dozens of passionate students, leaders and celebrities— over 300 short videos for a wide variety of problems and situations, each with a focus on simple but powerful actions bystanders can take to help. In April of 2016, the site was updated to include a number of additional resources: written tips crowdsourced from contributors and partner organizations; discussion materials to facilitate the use of its videos in classrooms and clubs; and The Weekly Stand, an initiative to spread simple habits of action.

Special thanks to our Ambassadors for their work advising the organization and spreading the word about Bystander Revolution online, in the media, and in their communities. These include Ambassador and Strategic Advisor Monica Lewinsky, Ambassador and early contributor Lily Collins, and our Youth Ambassadors: Hannah Alper, Jillian Frantz, Bobby Frantz, Molly Hernandez, Shereen Pimentel, Kat Zouboulakis, Carleigh O’Connell, Liam Clive, Oliver Clive, Natalie Madrigal, Paris Kirk, Katherine Schug, Jiaqi Gao, Alisha Woods, Ashleigh Weldon, and Gurwinder Singh.

Advisors

  1. Dr. Dorothy Espelage ~ a Professor of Child Development in the Department of Educational Psychology at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.
  2. Gavin de Becker is the nation’s best-known expert on the prediction and management of violence.
  3. doctor-with-stethoscope-smiley-emoticonDr. James McGee served as the Director of Psychology and Director of Law Enforcement and Forensic Services at Sheppard Pratt Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland until his retirement in 2001.
  4. Nicholas Carlisle is a human rights attorney, psychotherapist and the Executive Director of No Bully.
  5. Dr. Philip Zimbardo is Professor Emeritus of Psychology at Stanford University, and taught previously at Yale, NYU and Columbia.

To learn more and to continue reading  »»»»»»

Michael J. Fox | Bystanders

How can you help someone who is bullied or stereotyped for their differences? Advice from actor Michael J. Fox, who lives with Parkinson’s disease.

Bystander Revolution was founded by author and parent MacKenzie Bezos ~ The site launched in April of 2014

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🇨🇦International Day of Pink 2016

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These social diseases create barriers, bullying, harassment, hate and violence.

What is the Day of Pink?

pink_smiley_face_The Day of Pink is more than just a symbol of a shared belief in celebrating diversity, it’s also a commitment to being open minded, accepting differences and learning to respect each other, anyone can bully, anyone can be victimized by bullying, but together we can stop it.

dop_buttons_1024x1024April 13, 2016 marks the International Day of Pink. It is a day where communities across the country, and across the world, can unite in celebrating diversity and raising awareness to stop homophobia, transphobia, transmisogyny, and all forms of bullying.

The International Day of Pink was started in Nova Scotia when 2 straight high school students saw a gay student wearing a pink shirt being bullied. The 2 students intervened, but wanted to do more to prevent homophobic & transphobic bullying. They decided to purchase pink shirts, and a few days later got everyone at school to arrive pillowwearing pink, standing in solidarity. The result was that an entire school took a stand and began working together to prevent homophobic & transphobic bullyingEach year on the second Wednesday of April, millions of people wear pink and take a stand.

The Day of Pink is a symbol, a spark, that empowers and inspires youth across Canada to create amazing social change!

How can I get involved in the International Day of Pink?

  • Wear pink on April 13, 2016!
  • imagesConnect with your local politicians about becoming a Day of Pink Ambassador
  • Get Free Resources or Order Supplies
  • Find out more about activities you can do in your school, community, business or organization.
  • Learn about the causes of discrimination and what you can do to solve this problem.
  • Order T-shirts!!

Who are Day of Pink Ambassadors?

Day of Pink Ambassadors are politicians and community leaders from all over Canada who are rainbowwilling to stand up and speak out on behalf of the diversity of others. Check out our blog for posts of some of the DayofPink Ambassadors telling us what wearing pink to them means and why it matters to them. If you know a politician, Member of Parliament, Mayor, Town or City Councillor who is interested in becoming a DayofPink Ambassador encourage them to check this website out. Email us at Info@DayofPink.org

Why should you participate?

Have you ever seen a friend hurt because of discrimination? Have you been hurt yourself?

rainbowDiscrimination comes in many forms, including the following: racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, ableism, ageism, colonialism, and antisemitism. No one should have to experience the negativity created by discrimination.

Article by International Day of Pink

Do you need support right now? If so, please reach out.

Avez-vous besoin du soutient à présent? Si oui, n’hésitez pas de contacter:

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Study Finds That Homophobic People Are Actually More Likely To Be Gay

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Homophobia is more pronounced in individuals with an unacknowledged attraction to the same sex and who grew up with authoritarian parents who forbade such desires, a series of psychology studies demonstrates.

923004_10151331384711890_1479766938_nokEureka to actually hear or read it from a professional stand point as with these professionals at the University of Rochester in New York, the University of California and the University of Essex discovered through  psychological tests that individuals who identify as straight, often showed a strong attraction to the same sex, which I have many times over the years justified, (with reason, authoritarian parents ) that most of the hatred that was directed at me was not due of my sexuality at all but rather the realization that my sexuality represented the dark side of their own sexuality was what they really had issues of hatred dealing with or coming to terms with, not my sexuality, rightly so because 90% did eventually in a round about way bring it up in conversation or exited the closet. My many thanx for your hard work and research. In closing, through my own experiences and a life time of observations, I agree 100% with your findings. Terry.K 

stop-homophobia-d76466947A study has found that people who display homophobic tendencies are more likely to be gay.

Teams at the University of Rochester in New York, the University of California and the University of Essex found that individuals who identify as straight, often showed a strong attraction to the same sex in psychological tests.

Netta Weinstein, a lecturer at the University of Essex and the study’s lead author, said that

These individuals “may be threatened by gays and lesbians because homosexuals remind them of similar tendencies within themselves”.

The study analysed four separate experiments conduced in the US and Germany, which provided evidence that homophobia is in fact ‘external manifestation of repressed sexual desires’.

tumblr_n7vgfoXGtE1sp6e2vo1_r1_250Richard Ryan, a professor of psychology at the University of Rochester in New York, said that: “People who have homophobic attitudes, who are more prejudice or discriminatory against gay people, are themselves more likely to have a discrepancy between their unconscious attractions to same-sex partners than what they are aware of.

“Those people who have such discrepancies, who have really a split between their unconscious attraction and what they consciously say about themselves, are more likely to come from authoritarian homes.”

“If you are a parent who really believes your child should be straight, and when you use whatever means you can to convince them that they’re only good and worthy if they are, that would be very controlling and it creates a lot of conflict in the child.”

Professor Ryan concludes that the way that children process and resolve this information is yes-smileyto act out in a discriminatory or hateful way towards gay and lesbian people.

It’s hoped that the findings might help to explain the dynamics behind bullying and hate crimes.


Article for The Huffington Post UK by Sophie Brown ~ Posted: Jan 17, 2015


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Tyler Clementi’s parents open up about Rutgers freshman’s suicide in new interview

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“Never do a wrong thing to make a friend–or to keep one.” ~ Robert E. Lee

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Jane Clementi, second from right, the mother of Tyler Clementi, holds onto the arms of Ronnie Kroell, left, and Elliot London, as they walk across the George Washington Bridge in honer of Tyler’s memory and to bring attention to bullying awareness in a 2014 file photo. (Robert Sciarrino | The Star-Ledger) (Robert Sciarrino/The Star-Ledger)

Nearly five years after their son’s suicide, Tyler Clementi’s parents say they are not even close to “healed,” according to an interview scheduled to air Sunday.

tylerJane and Joe Clementi talked about the aftermath of the high-profile death of their son with reporter Erin Moriarty from “CBS Sunday Morning with Charles Osgood.”

Tyler jumped off the George Washington Bridge in 2010. A few days earlier Tyler learned his roommate at Rutgers University used a webcam to share video of the freshman in an intimate encounter with another man.

“Not even near healed,” Jane Clementi said in excerpts of the interview released Thursday by CBS. “I don’t know what ‘healed’ will be like. I don’t even know that there’s a word for healing. I think it’s learning to live through the pain.”

After Tyler’s suicide became a national story, the Clementi family started a foundation in his memory. The Tyler Clementi Foundation is focused on ending bullying.

The foundation is starting a new anti-bullying campaign, according to the CBS report. The “Day One” initiative will ask people to declare on the first day of school or work that they will never treat others differently because of their faith, sex, dress or looks.

In their interview, the Clementis talk about what they should have done differently when Tyler revealed to his parents that he was gay.

images (1)“I think a lot of parents hide,” Jane Clementi said, according to the interview excerpt. “And they don’t talk about their gay children. And they don’t share what’s happening in their gay children’s lives. And, I know when Tyler told me he was gay, what I really wanted was a person of faith, another Christian mom, to go and talk to. But, you know, no one in my faith community ever talked about having a gay child. No one had a gay relative – there was no ‘gay’ in our church.”

The family said they have not planned what they will do on Sept. 22, the fifth anniversary of Tyler’s death. But, they continue to talk about the lessons learned from their experience.

“Don’t underestimate what your child is going through,” Joe Clementi, Tyler’s father, said in the interview. “Even though you may not think it’s a big deal, they may think it’s the end of the world.”

reminder-smiley-faceThe interview airs Sunday at 9 a.m.
Article posted By Kelly Heyboer | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com on June 04, 2015

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Nova Scotia cyber-bullying law continues to spur debate

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6i3zxbkmTwo years later, Cyber Safety Act, written after the death of Rehtaeh Parsons, is criticized for being too broad and praised for being effective

Wayne MacKay, a professor in human rights law at Dalhousie University thinks the legislation is doing its job, although he feels there should be different standards for adults, and accused cyber-bullies should have the chance to defend themselves before a case reaches court.
Wayne MacKay, a professor in human rights law at Dalhousie University thinks the legislation is doing its job, although he feels there should be different standards for adults, and accused cyber-bullies should have the chance to defend themselves before a case reaches court.
HALIFAX—An overwhelming majority of complaints filed under Nova Scotia’s anti-cyber-bullying law have been resolved out of court, proof that the law is working, supporters of the legislation say.

Two years after it was passed in April 2013, the bill still faces criticism from legal experts who say it threatens freedom of expression.

The legislation is the first of its kind in Canada.
Two challenges aimed at striking down the controversial law are before the courts, and, in a separate case, an order under the Cyber Safety Act was overturned by the Nova Scotia Supreme Court on grounds it violated charter rights.

But a member of Nova Scotia’s CyberScan unit, established under the act to crack down on cyber-bullying, said there is a side of the law the public doesn’t hear about as much.

Of the 559 complaints of cyber-bullying filed with CyberScan, only two have proceeded to court, with the rest resolved through informal negotiations, said Dana Bowden, one of the five investigators with the unit.

“We’ve had a great deal of success,” Bowden said. Bowden said the unit’s goal is to educate and resolve rather than be punitive.

bg5gtu“I think once you’re able to speak with individuals and they have an understanding of the fact that there is a law in Nova Scotia around cyber-bullying, and how that law works . . . people seem to be getting that message.”

Under the act, people who say they have been victims of cyber-bullying can also bypass the CyberScan unit and apply to a justice of the peace for a protection order. Fewer than 10 protection orders have been issued since the law’s creation in 2013.

One of those was revoked in March, in the case of Debert businessman Jonathan Baha’i, who was accused of posting defamatory information online about his former landlord Anton Self. A judge originally issued a one-year protection order, which included a ban on Baha’i communicating with or about Self, in November 2014.
Lawyer and privacy expert David Fraser, an outspoken critic of the act, said such orders violate the right to free speech.

“Anything that limits what you can or do say on its face infringes section 2B of the charter,” said Fraser, who represents the complainants in the two current court challenges.
Fraser said the legislation, written less than three weeks after the death of Rehtaeh Parsons, was done so in haste.

“My concern with the legislation is that it’s so grotesquely over-broad. It captures a whole lot of stuff that you or I would not even consider to be cyber-bullying.”

12549judge_001Judge Gerald Moir made similar comments when he revoked the protection order on Baha’i in the Supreme Court.
“A neighbour who calls to warn that smoke is coming from your upstairs windows causes fear. A lawyer who sends a demand letter by fax or e-mail causes intimidation,” Moir said in his ruling.

“Each is a cyber-bully according to the literal meaning of the definitions (of the law), no matter the good intentions of the neighbour, (or) the just demand of the lawyer.”
Fraser said it irks him that the judge had to go to such lengths to interpret the legislation.

“The fact that a judge has to essentially rewrite a key part of the law in order to make it make sense, in the context of what it’s intended to do — that tells me that the legislature did not do a good enough job in being clear about what it was trying to do,” he said.
But Wayne MacKay, a professor in human rights law at Dalhousie University, doesn’t see the judge’s comments as condemnations of the act.

“Some would certainly argue that the definition of cyber-bullying itself may be too broad,” said MacKay, who chaired the cyber-bullying task force ordered by the government after Parsons died.
“But another way — and that’s what happened in this case — is to say, ‘Well, we’ll take it on a case-by-case basis.’ ”

There are a couple of things MacKay said he would change about the act: having different standards for adults, as opposed to youth, and giving accused cyber-bullies the chance to defend themselves before a case reaches court.

But overall, MacKay thinks the legislation is doing its job.
“I think the act is a necessary and positive addition to giving victims some remedies they didn’t have before.”


Article posted Fri May 01 2015 Posted by Leah Collins Lipsett The Canadian Press — Follow @leahgcl on Twitter


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Section Two of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms

judge-smiley-emoticon-1Section 2 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms is the section of the Constitution of Canada that lists what the Charter calls “fundamental freedoms” theoretically applying to everyone in Canada, regardless of whether they are a Canadian citizen, or an individual or corporation. These freedoms can be held against actions of all levels of government and are enforceable by the courts. The fundamental freedoms are freedom of expression, freedom of religion, freedom of thought, freedom of belief, freedom of peaceful assembly, and freedom of association.

Section 1 of the Charter permits Parliament or the provincial legislatures to enact laws that place certain kinds of limited restrictions on the freedoms listed under section 2. Additionally, these freedoms can be temporarily invalidated by the notwithstanding clause of the Charter.

As a part of the Charter and of the larger Constitution Act, 1982, section 2 took legal effect on April 17, 1982. Many of its rights, however, have roots in Canada in the 1960 Canadian Bill of Rights (although this law was of limited effectiveness), and in traditions under a theorized Implied Bill of Rights. Many of the freedoms, such as freedom of expression, have also been at the centre of federalism disputes.

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SUICIDE OF GAY BENGALI ACTRESS SHEDS LIGHT ON HOMOPHOBIA IN ASIA

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doctor-emoticonPriya Vedi, a doctor in India, slit her wrists in a hotel room after she wrote a suicide note on Facebook, which was shared more than 3,500 times. From India Today:

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dishaBengali actress Disha Ganguly, known for her role in the popular sitcom Tumi Ashbey Bole, committed suicide on April 9. Her boyfriend found her body hanging in her house. Officials believe she committed suicide due to social pressures regarding her lesbian relationship with another actress. Her death showcases the harsh treatment of LGBT people in Asia.

“A few months back, this actress friend of Ganguly, started staying at her apartment,” explained one police official. “Soon, Ganguly’s mother arrived from Nairobi (where her parents reside) and objected to their relationship. Her mother even got her friend to move out of the apartment.”

Ganguly was engaged to Vivaan Ghosh, a fellow actor, at the time this second relationship allegedly began. Her parents pushed her to accept his marriage proposal. With pressure from her parents, boyfriend, and girlfriend, police believe “she gave in to death.” After her actress friend found out about Ganguly’s suicide, she attempted to throw herself in front of a train. The locals saved her and she is currently in the hospital.

winking-smiley-carried-sad-angry-ones-3871588Homosexual acts are illegal in 78 countries, including Bangladesh and India. In December 2014, a survey found that 59% of the gays in Bangladesh live in fear of being outed. These laws force LGBT people to leave their families and countries.

Joleen, a Singapore native now known as Joe Wong, was beaten and forced into therapy by her family. She eventually escaped and changed into a man in Bangkok. Joe is now working with the Asia-Pacific Transgender Network rights group.

“I’ve never been more at home than now, even though I’m not at home,” he claimed. “I removed everything that was bringing me down. I removed the toxic people in my life. Now it’s just me and my problems that I have to confront,” said Wong, who did not identify the abusive relative to avoid further straining family ties, “I feel really liberated.”


Article By MARY CHASTAIN for BreitBart – 22 Apr 2015


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One LGBT School’s Effort to Stop Bullying Starts Young

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Computer-Training“Why not now?” he asked, noting that as the country grapples with marriage equality, it will inevitably have to deal with questions of how to better support LGBT families and their children. “This school has always been needed.”

(Photo: Getty Images)
(Photo: Getty Images)
It was 2007 when Christian Zsilavetz, a math teacher, started volunteering with a parents’ support group for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender youths at Seattle’s Children’s Hospital. The group was about 40 members strong and met one Sunday each month in the hospital, tucked away behind the lush green foliage of downtown Emerald City. Zsilavetz was already a few years into his own gender transition and, with two decades of teaching experience, decided to help out with the group’s child care. Parents drove hours just to be part of the group. Soon, Zsilavetz could see why.

“You’ve got a lot of gender nonconforming and trans youth on the spectrum, and they don’t fit the mold of most public and private schools,” Zsilavetz, now 45, told TakePart. “There’s still not a lot of room for those pink princess boys.”

In the years since, Zsilavetz, who identifies as a transgender man, started a family of his own. Today, he and his wife have two children: a son, who’s three, and a daughter, who’s six. They consider themselves a transgender family. In 2012, Zsilavetz’s wife got a job at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The family moved to Atlanta and quickly became part of the city’s thriving gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender community, and Zsilavetz took the bold step of starting a school catering specifically to families like his own.

That project, called Pride School, is set to open Atlanta in August. It will be open to K–12 students and is looking to enroll 10–15 students for the upcoming school year. Annual tuition is expected to be $12,000. Students and parents will get access to the school’s gender-neutral bathrooms, the ability to choose their own gender pronouns, and a test-free curriculum built entirely around students’ interests.

SmileyComputerDisconnectedThe idea of an LGBT-specific school isn’t new; New York City’s Harvey Milk High School has been around for two decades. But opening one that so openly challenges gender norms and caters to children as young as four years old is more unconventional. Statistics are scarce, but there’s been a general recognition among researchers that many LGBT youths are coming out at earlier ages. One study found that gay and bisexual boys experience their first same-sex attraction around age eight, and for girls it’s even earlier. Researchers at San Francisco State University released a survey that found many LGBT adults recount being bullied for flouting gender norms throughout their years in school.

But for Zsilavetz, the idea isn’t so much about catering to children who experience bullying because of their own gender or sexual identity. It’s about reaching LGBT parents and teachers who often have to hide behind the rigid gender norms of the schools where they work and send their children.

“We’re not the gay kids’ school,” Zsilavetz said. “Our school is about a community within a community. You’ll have straight parents with queer kids, queer parents with straight kids, along with queer and straight educators.” Teachers are already contacting him about jobs. Some are LGBT people hoping to work in a more open environment.

Still, the school has an uphill climb before it becomes reality. It’s still trying to secure space, and Zsilavetz says students and staff will start crowdsourcing campaigns in about two weeks to raise tuition and salary costs. It also doesn’t have accreditation, which apparently isn’t an issue for younger students. Older students will be able to dually enroll in online programs to meet accreditation standards. But Zsilavetz says the timing is right.


Article published March 28, 2015 By Jamilah King


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Columbia Middle School students make anti-bullying video

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PCWhen people hurt you over and over, think of them like sand paper; They may scratch and hurt you a bit, but in the end, you end up polished and they end up useless. **Chris Colfer**

Columbia Middle School students make anti-bullying video YOUTUBE/COLUMBIA MIDDLE SCHOOL
Columbia Middle School students make anti-bullying video
YOUTUBE/COLUMBIA MIDDLE SCHOOL
COLUMBIA STATION, Ohio – Students from a Lorain County middle school have united to create an anti-bullying video. The video, which was posted to YouTube on Friday , was created by students at Columbia Middle School.
According to the YouTube description , students in the CMS advanced technology class, including Jill Grzywna and Danielle Roginsky, helped craft the video after numerous hours of shooting and editing.

You can watch the video below: Published on Mar 20, 2015

clapper-clapper-film-movie-smiley-emoticon-000232-largeTwitter: cmstechnology@cmsacker Could not be more proud of two students in our advanced technology class. Jill Grzywna and Danielle Roginsky spent an enormous amount of time planning, taping, re-taping, editing, and choosing just the right music (River Flows in You by Yiruma) and the result is this beautiful video that sends a message to all people to make the difference. Also very proud of the rest of the class; they all participated in this video and made a difference!


Article Courtesy of newsnet5.com – by Tim Rearden, Mar 22, 2015


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