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D.C. Legislators Reintroduce Anti-Bullying Bill

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Supporters of new anti-bullying legislation gathered outside of the Wilson Building Thursday.
Jessica Gould
Supporters of new anti-bullying legislation gathered outside of the Wilson Building Thursday.

His name is D'Angelo Morrison. But that's not what his classmates used to call him.

"They just called me 'faggot'," he says.

Morrison, who is gay, always hated that slur. But at his Northwest D.C. high school, he couldn't escape it. He heard it whispered in the hallways, and saw it scrawled on the bathroom walls.

"I did feel really depressed a lot," he says. "When I would go home I would go to my room and stay to myself the whole day and not talk to anybody, I didn't want to eat because I didn't know how to explain what was going on to me at school."

Morrison is 20 now. And he has a message for teens today.

"I just tell the youth it will get better," he says.

And he hopes it will get better soon, now that the D.C. Council has introduced The Bullying and Intimidation Prevention Act of 2011. The bill calls on D.C. schools, libraries, recreation centers and the University of the District of Columbia to establish anti-bullying policies. D.C. Council member Harry Thomas Jr. co-introduced the bill.

"It requires development of express policies to prohibit harassment, intimidation and bullying including by electronic communication in all those agencies that are listed," he says.

The bill also calls for the schools and recreation centers to investigate incidents of bullying and levy consequences.

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