Anti-bullying legislation, accurate birth certificates & employment nondiscrimination among priorities.
AUSTIN, Texas – A press conference will be held Monday, March 7th on the South Steps of the Texas State Capitol to officially start Equality Texas’ biennial Lobby Day efforts. The press conference starts at 9:00 a.m.
David and Amy Truong will attend the press conference and tell the emotional story of their son, Asher Brown. Bullies at Asher’s Houston-area school tormented him in September 2010 to the point that the 13-year-old committed suicide. This month, Asher would have celebrated his 14th birthday.
Click here for a video about Asher Brown.
Following the press conference, the Truongs and EQTX Lobby Day participants will meet with Texas lawmakers to urge them to pass numerous laws including comprehensive anti-bullying policies, prohibiting employment discrimination, and enabling adopted children with same-sex parents to have both their parent’s names on their birth certificates.
The Truongs and Equality Texas will urge lawmakers to pass CSHB 224 by Rep. Mark Strama from the House Public Education Committee and send the bill to the floor of the House for passage. The bill provides comprehensive legislation to address the growing crisis of bullying and cyberbullying in our public schools. The Truongs and Equality Texas will also ask for a public hearing on HB 1386 by Rep. Garnet Coleman before the House Committee on Public Health so that the committee can expeditiously address the public health threat of youth suicide associated with bullying. This bill requires the development of a comprehensive suicide prevention program for implementation in junior, middle, and high schools.
Fort Worth City Councilmember Joel Burns will also speak at the press conference. Burns received national attention in October after discussing Asher’s story during a city council meeting. Burns publicly denounced bullying and encouraged those who are bullied with the now iconic saying “it gets better.”
State Representatives Garnet Coleman and Michael Villarreal will also attend the press conference. They will speak about suicide prevention and employment nondiscrimination legislation pending at the Capitol, respectively.
For a full list of legislation supported by Equality Texas, visit the Legislative Information Center at www.EqualityTexas.org For a complete schedule of Lobby Day events, go to www.EQTXLobbyDay.com
As a non-partisan organization with more than two decades of rich history, Equality Texas has established itself as a policy and advocacy authority at the Texas Capitol and across the state. Equality Texas works to eliminate discriminatory policies at the local and state levels.