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Community Advocacy: ! How to be an Advocate with !

LGBTQ Youth

Welcome/Introductions
!

Name, Preferred Gender Pronouns (PGPs), & role


!

What do you hope to get out of todays training?

Ground Rules
Try On: try on new processes, ideas, perspectives before automatically rejecting them because they are different than your experience. Be willing to step outside your comfort zone. Confidentiality: Anything said here of a personal nature cannot be shared outside of this room without the persons consent. Whats said here, stays here. Take Space/Make Space: If weve been sharing too much, MAKE SPACE and turn the stage over to someone else who hasnt had the chance to shine yet. If you havent been participating much, TAKE SPACE.

GSA Network
Gay-Straight Alliance Network is a youth leadership organization that connects school-based Gay-Straight Alliances (GSAs) to each other and community resources through peer support, leadership development, and training. GSA Network supports young people in starting, strengthening, and sustaining GSAs and builds the capacity of GSAs to:
!

! !

create safe environments in schools for students to support each other and learn about homophobia, transphobia, and other oppressions, educate the school community about homophobia, transphobia, gender identity, and sexual orientation issues, and fight discrimination, harassment, and violence in schools.

American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California


! !

! !

The American Civil Liberties Union is a national organization est. 1927 Work to defend and preserve the rights of all people, as guaranteed by the Constitution and laws of the United States. Our mission is to defend civil liberties and rights in the U.S. Active in a wide variety of issues (Workers Rights, Immigrants Rights, Privacy, Economic Justice, Racial Justice, Human Rights, etc.) Over 500,000 members, active in all 50 states that help support our work

LGBTQ 101

Goals and Objectives


Gain a deeper understanding of sexual orientation and gender Gain a deeper understanding of the complexities of LGBTQ terms

What does LGBTQ mean?


LGBTQ includes all individuals and communities who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender queer or those who are questioning their sexual orientation and/or gender identity Other acronyms: GLBT, LGBTQQIA

Who are we talking about?


Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Questioning
!
Sexual Orientation: refers to an enduring pattern of emotional, romantic, and/or sexual attractions. Also refers to a persons sense of identity based on those attractions. Gender Identity: Personal, deeply-felt sense of being male, female, something other or in between

Youth: Ages 24 and under

Sex
!
Male

! Intersex ! !

Female

Sex refers to a persons biological sex.

Intersex
Intersex refers to combinations of physical and genetic features that usually distinguish male from female. Sex is made of (but not limited to):
!Hormones !Chromosomes !Genes !Secondary

sex characteristics !Internal reproductive organs !External genitalia

Gender Identity
!
Man

! Genderqueer ! !

Woman

Gender is a socially constructed category ! that places roles on individuals based ! on preconceived notions.! Gender identity is how a person identifies.

Transgender, Genderqueer & GNC


Transgender can be used as an umbrella term for all persons whose gender identity is different from the sex they were assigned at birth and/or whose gender expression is non-stereotypical.
! -ed

can be offensive

Genderqueer and gender nonconforming people who may not necessarily identify as man or woman; they might not identify as transgender either.

Gender Expression
!
Masculine

! Androgynous ! !

Feminine

Gender expression is how a person! expresses their gender.

Androgynous
People who express their gender androgynously could either express their gender as a blending of both masculine and feminine or neither categories. Genderqueer individuals tend to, but not necessarily, express their gender in androgynous ways, i.e. clothes, mannerisms, names.

Sexual Orientation
!
Women

! Bi/Pansexual ! !

Men

Sexual orientation is how a person identifies ! based on their emotional, psychological ! and physical attractions.!

Sexual Orientation
Three components of sexual orientation
! Identity:

Straight/Heterosexual, Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Pansexual ! Behavior: Opposite-sex contact, same-sex contact, bothsex contact, all-sex contact ! Attraction: Who is someone romantically, emotionally, physically, spiritually attracted to? !
Source: American Psychological Association. 2008.!Answers to your questions: For a better understanding of sexual orientation and homosexuality.!Washington, DC: Author. [Retrieved from www.apa.org/topics/ sorientation.pdf.]

LGBTQ Basics
Male

Sex ! Intersex Gender Identity !


Transgender

Female

Man

Woman

Masculine

Gender Expression ! Androgynous Sexual Orientation


Bisexual/Pansexual/ asexual

Feminine

Women

Men

Being Aware of Sexual Orientation/Identities!


LGBTQ people may become aware of their orientations/identities as a child or as an older adult Never too young or too old to come out Not everyone has to come out Recognize that coming out is a life long process

Queer Language
Offensive/Antiquated Terms Commonly Accepted Terms

Homosexual Transsexual Hermaphrodite Tom Boy/Sissy Kids/Children Sexual preference/Lifestyle

Gay Transgender Intersex Genderqueer/variant Youth/Young people Sexual orientation/Gender identity

Questions? Comments?

Bullying & Harassment

Goals and Objectives


Learn the difference between harassment and discrimination Understand and recognize the risk factors and possible signs of being bullied or bullying Identify current problems and solutions for school climate today around LGBTQ issues

Harassment vs. Discrimination


Discrimination- !prejudicial!or distinguishing treatment of an individual based on the individual(s) membership - or perceived membership - in a certain group or category. Harassment- wide range of behaviors of an offensive nature. It is commonly understood as behavior intended to disturb or upset, and it is characteristically repetitive and involves threatening, insulting or dehumanizing gestures.
! One

severe or egregious incident could constitute harassment.

Types of Bullying
Social Bullying
! Verbal ! Indirect

Physical Bullying Cyber/Electronic bullying


!
Bullying creates an intimidating or hostile educational environment.

Electronic Act
An "electronic act" is defined as transmission of a communication, including, but not limited to, a message, text, sound, or image by means of an electronic devise, including but not limited to, a telephone, wireless telephone or other wireless communication device, computer, or pager.

Source: California Education Code 48900

Who Are Affected by Anti-LGBTQ ! Bias Bullying?


Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning (LGBTQ) Youth Youth with LGBTQ parents Youth perceived as LGBTQ; gender non-conforming youth Youth with LGBTQ friends ALL youth who learn bias against LGBTQ people

Risk Factors for Being Bullied


Youth who are bullied may have one or more of the following risk factors: Are perceived as different from their peers Are perceived as weak or unable to defend oneself Are depressed, anxious, or have low self-esteem Are less popular than others and have few friends Does not get along well with others

Risk Factors for Bullying Others


Youth who have these factors are more likely to bully others: Are aggressive or easily frustrated Have less parental involvement or issues at home Think badly of others Have difficulty following rules View violence in a positive way Have friends who bully others Are bullied themselves

Signs of Being Bullied


Unexplainable injuries Lost or destroyed clothing, books, electronics, or jewelry Frequent headaches or stomach aches, faking illnesses Changes in eating habits Emotional outbursts Difficulty sleeping Feelings of helplessness or decreased self-esteem Sudden loss of friends or avoidance of social situations Self-destructive behaviors

Signs of Bullying Others


Get into physical or verbal fights Have friends who bully others Are increasingly aggressive Have unexplained new belongings or extra money Blame others for their problems Dont accept responsibility for their actions Are competitive and worry about their reputation Get sent to detention/principals office frequently Bullied themselves

Reports of Bullying by Youth


A study by the U.S. Department of Education showed that an adult was notified in only about 1/3 of bullying cases (2009)

Top 2 Reasons Students are Being Targeted by Bullying in LAUSD

Top 2 Reasons Students are Being Targeted by Bullying in LAUSD


!
1. 2.

Race/ethnicity Perceived sexual orientation/gender expression

Effects of Verbal and ! Non-Verbal Harassment


Emotional turmoil Low self-esteem Loneliness Depression Poor academic achievement High rates of absenteeism Bring a weapon to school Students who witness bullying also suffer mental health consequences
Source: Rivers et all (2009)

Responding to Anti-LGBTQ Language


!

How would you respond if a youth says to you thats so gay!???

Possible Responses
What do you mean by that? Do you say that as a compliment? How do you think a gay person might feel?

Responding to Anti-LGBTQ Language


Stop it Educate Be proactive Dont ignore it Dont be afraid of making the situation worse Dont excuse the behavior Dont try to judge how upset the target is Dont be immobilized by fear
Source: Welcoming Schools Guide (2009)

Bullying and Harassment at School


Homophobic remarks and harassment throughout the school day can cause LGBTQ youth to feel disrespected, unwanted, and unsafe The National School Climate Survey found that 8 out of 10 students hear anti-LGBT language frequently (2011)

Source: GLSEN - National School Climate Survey (2011)

School Climate Today


Biased Remarks at School
! 84.9%

of students heard gay used in a negative way frequently or often at school and 91.4% reported that they felt distressed because of this language ! 56.9 % of students reported hearing homophobic and negative remarks about gender expression from teachers or other school staff

Source: GLSEN - National School Climate Survey (2011)

School Climate Today


Safety and Victimization at School
!6

out of 10 students felt unsafe because of their sexual orientation ! 4 out of 10 students felt unsafe because of their gender expression ! 6 out of10 students who were harassed or assaulted in school did not report the incident to school staff ! 4 out of 10 students who did report an incident said that school staff did nothing in response

Source: GLSEN - National School Climate Survey (2011)

School Climate Today


Absenteeism
!3

out of 10 students missed at least one entire day of school in the past month because they felt unsafe or uncomfortable ! Students who experience high levels of victimization were more likely to miss a day of school in the past month
" "

3 times as likely for sexual orientation 2 times as likely for gender expression

Source: GLSEN - National School Climate Survey (2011)

One Thing You Would Like to Change Right Now


LGBT Youth Non-LGBT Youth

Source: HRC - Growing Up LGBT in America (2012)

One Thing You Would Like to Change Right Now


LGBT Youth
1.

Non-LGBT Youth

2. 3.

Understanding/tolerance/ hate My parents/family situation Where I live/who I live with

Source: HRC - Growing Up LGBT in America (2012)

One Thing You Would Like to Change Right Now


LGBT Youth
1.

Non-LGBT Youth
1. 2. 3.

2. 3.

Understanding/tolerance/ hate My parents/family situation Where I live/who I live with

Money/debt/finances Appearance/weight Improving mental health

Source: HRC - Growing Up LGBT in America (2012)

Most Important Problem Right Now


LGBT Youth Non-LGBT Youth

Source: HRC - Growing Up LGBT in America (2012)

Most Important Problem Right Now


LGBT Youth
1. 2. 3.

Non-LGBT Youth

Non-accepting families School/bullying problems Fear of being out or open

Source: HRC - Growing Up LGBT in America (2012)

Most Important Problem Right Now


LGBT Youth
1. 2. 3.

Non-LGBT Youth
1. 2. 3.

Non-accepting families School/bullying problems Fear of being out or open

Classes/exams/grades College/career Financial pressures related to college or job

Source: HRC - Growing Up LGBT in America (2012)

School Climate & School Discipline


LGBTQ Youth are often punished inconsistently and disproportionately Punitive discipline policies often remove youth from the education environment (exclusionary discipline) Few opportunities for Positive Behavior Intervention Systems (PBIS) and/or Restorative Justice

School Climate Today


Solutions:
! Gay-Straight

Alliances ! Inclusive Curriculum ! Supportive Educators ! Comprehensive Bullying/Harassment Policies

Source: GLSEN - National School Climate Survey (2011)

School Climate Today


Students in schools with these solutions report:
! Hearing

fewer homophobic remarks ! Have staff that intervened upon students behalf when hearing homophobic remarks ! Feeling safer at school ! Are physically and verbally harassed at lower rates ! Missed fewer days of school ! Greater sense of connectedness with school community and students

Source: GLSEN - National School Climate Survey (2011)

Current Representation
Approximately 300,000 LGBTQ youth are arrested and/or detained each year of which 60% are black or Latino LGBTQ youth make up 5-7% of the national youth population and 13-15% of those in juvenile detention

Zero Tolerance Policies


Zero tolerance policies require schools to suspend or expel students for violating rules, no matter what extenuating circumstances there might be Zero tolerance policies are often put in place in response to the failure of school districts to address the problem of anti-LGBTQ bullying

Zero Tolerance Policies


Why dont Zero Tolerance policies help protect LGBTQ students?
! They

dont improve school safety or climate ! They dont stop students who bully from bullying ! They are used against LGBTQ students more than straight students

Zero Tolerance Policies

LGBTQ students sometimes engage in bullying behavior as a defense or survival mechanism.


!

Often reflects institutionalized bias

Other Means of Push-out


Willful Defiance Truancy/School-based arrests High stakes testing Outing Foster Care and Homelessness

Questions? Comments?

The Rights of LGBTQ Students

Goals and Objectives


Learn about the various laws that protect LGBTQ students Understand the civil liberties of LGBTQ students protected by state and federal laws Identify pertinent California Education Codes that are relevant to LGBTQ students

Legal Disclaimer
The topics we will discuss today are basic rights pertaining to students. While Im not a lawyer and cannot give legal related advice or answer individual legal questions, I will be talking about how to protect yourself and your students. If there are specific legal questions, feel free to contact me either after the presentation or via email.

California Education Code


201(e) There is an urgent need to teach and inform pupils in the public schools about their rights, as guaranteed by the federal and state constitutions, in order to increase pupils' awareness and understanding of their rights and the rights of others, with the intention of promoting tolerance and sensitivity in public schools and in society as a means of responding to potential harassment and hate violence.

Freedom of Speech
First Amendment
! U.S.

and CA Constitutions apply on campus ! The First Amendment protects the Freedom of Speech ! Particularly important for minority groups with unpopular viewpoints
" " " "

Gay Pride Parades Transgender Day of Remembrance Day of Silence Harvey Milk Day

Freedom of Speech
Guarantees students the right to speak our minds, including LGBTQ issues, regardless of public opinion
! Censorship

of pro-LGBTQ messages is not allowed solely on the basis of it being controversial, inappropriate for minors or just morally wrong

Allows students to share their stories, be who they are, and build public support for LGBTQ equality

Freedom of Speech
Applies in many different contexts
! Freedom
" " " " " " "

To Be Out To Discuss LGBTQ Issues

Courts have found that this is NOT inherently sexual Class Projects Book Reports T-shirts Armbands Buttons Bulletin Boards

! Freedom

Freedom of Speech
Limitations
!A
" " " "

student may NOT:


Substantially disrupt class time or the school environment Incite others to break the law or school rules Say obscene things
"

Discussion of LGBT issues is not obscene

Make false statements of fact (versus opinion) about another person (i.e. defamation)

Freedom of Expression
First Amendment
! Attending
"

school dances with a same-sex partner ! Gender expression


Expression vs. Dress Code Policies
! No
"

filtering of internet sites that have pro-LGBT messaging


Some schools have filters that label it as sexual content because it says LGBT

Freedom of Assembly
First Amendment also protects your Freedom of Assembly The Federal Equal Access Act
Went into effect in 1984 ! Federal law requires school to allow the GSAs
!
" "

Only if non-curriculum clubs are allowed to exist and meet on school property Must provide the same access to meeting space, budget allocations, ability to post flyers, public announcements

Schools may not treat a GSA any differently than any other non-curriculum based school clubs

Source: Title 20, United States Code, !!4071

Right to Privacy
Outing
! Students

have a right to privacy, which includes the right to keep information about their sexual orientation private ! School officials may NOT tell a students parents without their consent, even if the student is out on campus except with a compelling justification ! School officials may NOT use a students sexual orientation to manipulate students in any way

Right to Unbiased & Inclusive Curriculum


Fair Accurate Inclusive Respectful Education (FAIR) Act (SB 48)
! Went

into effect January 2012 ! Includes historical LGBT people and people with disabilities in K-12 social sciences through ageappropriate curriculum

Source: CA Ed Code 51204.5, 51500, 51501, 60040, & 60044

Right to Unbiased & Inclusive Curriculum


The California Comprehensive Sexual Health and HIV/ AIDS Prevention Education Act (SB 71)
Went into effect in 2004 ! Replaced confusing and contradictory statutes on sex education ! All public schools must teach HIV prevention education ! If public schools choose to teach sexual education, it must be comprehensive, medically accurate, objective, ageappropriate and bias-free
!
" "

This excludes abstinence-only education and religious doctrine More specific content requirements kick in, starting in 7th grade

Educators cannot present information that is biased against LGBT people

Source: CA Ed Code 51930 51939

Right to Healthcare
Students 12 years and older have the right to leave school to seek confidential medical services. Sensitive services can include but are not limited to:
!HIV

or Sexually transmitted infection (STI) testing !Mental health or counseling services !Drug or alcohol treatment/ counseling !Abortion care !Obtaining birth control

Schools must excuse students for confidential medical services without the consent or notification of the students parent Schools must excuse absences related to having medical services rendered. Teachers must allow students to make up all assignments
Source: CA Ed Code 48205, 46010.1 (plus a panoply of state laws and cases)

Right to Be Free From Harassment & Discrimination


Students are protected on the basis of:
! Sexual

orientation ! Gender, gender identity and gender expression " Under CA law, gender can mean ones sex BUT it also includes a persons gender identity even if not associated with assigned sex at birth. ! Association with people with any of the protected characteristics

Source: CA Ed Code 200-220

Right to Be Free From Harassment & Discrimination


Districts must prohibit discrimination on the basis of gender in: ! Enrollment ! Counseling ! Availability of physical education ! Athletic activities ! Sports

Source: CA Ed Code 221.5

Rights of Transgender Students


School Success and Opportunity Act (AB 1266)
! Went

into effect January 1st, 2014 ! California law that helps transgender students participate and succeed in schools so they can graduate with their peers ! Law ensures California schools understand their obligation to meet the educational needs of transgender students, and provide an opportunity for them to participate fully in all schools activities and facilities. ! Restates existing law and gives guidance to schools and districts
Source: CA Ed Code 220, 221.5, 234.1, 235

Right to Be Free From Harassment


Seths Law (AB 9)
! Went

into effect July 1st, 2012 ! New California state law strengthens existing state antibullying laws ! Requires teachers and other school personnel to intervene when safe to do so

Source: CA Ed Code 234, 234.1, 234.2, 234.3 & 234.5

Right to Be Free From Harassment


Bullying: Alternative Discipline (AB 1729)
! Went

into effect January 1st, 2013 ! New California law requires administrators try alternatives before suspension, except for certain serious offenses
"

Including referrals to counselors and guidance teams, positive behavioral support and restorative justice

Source: CA Ed Code 48900 & 48900.5

Right to Be Free From Harassment


CA law is designed to protect LGBTQ students and holds schools and school officials liable for failing to do so Students DO NOT have to put up with being bullied Schools are required to protect against harassment
! They

may NOT ignore it ! They may NOT say it should be expected ! They may NOT say they didnt know they had to protect students

Right to Be Free From Harassment


Students may NOT be harassed for:
! Being

LGBTQ ! Being perceived as LGBTQ ! For being friends with LGBTQ people ! For having LGBTQ family members ! For dressing in any particular gender nonconforming clothing

Questions? Comments?

Uniform Complaint Procedures

Goals and Objectives


Learn about the Uniform Complaint Procedures Understand how the Uniform Complaint Procedures work with the Nondiscrimination Policies Identify how to find your schools Uniform Complaint Procedures and Form

Education Code Mandates


Nondiscrimination Policy
! Adopt

a policy that prohibits discrimination, harassment, intimidation, and bullying a process for receiving and investigating complaints of discrimination, harassment, intimidation, and bullying

Uniform Complaint Procedures


! Adopt

Uniform Complaint Form


California Department of Education mandated form All school districts must have this form
! If

the district has a specific form for their district, complainants should use the one provided ! If the district does not have one, use the CDEs

Where to find the UCF


! Ask

the school ! Ask the district ! Check the website (school, district, etc).

Tips for Filing a Complaint


Any student, parent or interested-third party can file a complaint A complaint can be filed anonymously Have someone from the school or district sign and date the form Ask for a solution Mark in your calendar the timeline Do NOT use Williams form Do NOT use employee discrimination form

Enumerated Categories
Disability Gender Gender identity Gender expression Nationality Race or Ethnicity Religion Sexual orientation Actual or perceived Association with a person or group

Publicity of Policies
Associated Student Body room Teachers Lounges Classrooms Student/Parent Handbooks School/District Websites

Questions? Comments?

Adult/Youth/Organizational Partnerships

Goals and Objectives


Learn how to be an effective adult ally Understand how to be an effective advocate while be cognizant of adult privilege Identify importance of and possible opportunities for coalition building

Adult Roles
!

What roles can and should Adult allies have when it comes to LGBTQ youth?

Youth Roles
Youth Empowered to Act (YETA)
! Youth-led,

youth-focused coalition ! Created their own mission statement, goals, and objectives ! Implement their own projects ! Adult allies support them with resources and limited advice

Organizational Roles
Project SPIN (Suicide Prevention Intervention Now)
! Coalition

of like-minded and interested organizations ! Brought together by local organization to continue discussion on how to work together ! Collaboration and collection of resources
"

i.e. Working together on presentations, putting resources in same location

! Utilize

the voices of the youth they work with to effectively assist them as a unified front

Adult Roles
Effective Partnership Adult Privilege

Advocate with youth Allies to youth Listening/Support Voice

Advocate for youth Dictating to youth Lecture Overshadow

Advocacy: Your Voice Matters!

What is Advocacy?
! ! ! ! ! !
!

It is calling for change when and where change is needed It is representing the needs of others who cannot advocate for themselves; It is going to the source who can make change happen; It is promoting a broader discussion with other students and networks It is assisting district officials with analysis to make sure schools are responsible and fair It is educating community members about solutions;
IT IS RAISING OUR VOICES!!

Taking Action!
Remember: Goal
Activities:

Phone calls Letters/Emails Rallies Lobby Visits Engaging decision makers

Location Message People Time

How can we influence decision-makers?


Send mass postcards, emails, faxes, or letters Send hand-written or personalized letters Call the district office Get published (yourself/grasstops) in a local or state paper Get grasstops (community and influential leaders) to call the office of the legislator Work in coalition with other organizations Meet with the school staff or school district officials

Effective Letter Writing


Elected officials pay a lot of attention to constituent mail When policies are being considered, decision-makers look closely at their constituents opinions as expressed through letters emails, faxes and mailed letters Decision-makers receive far fewer pieces of mail than you might imagine and assume that each letter they receive represents the opinion of many thousands of community members who did not take the time to write

Calling Campaigns
Phone calls from community members providing feedback on policy and advocacy issues cant easily be ignored Build calling campaigns to communicate the urgency of the issue When policies are being considered, decision-makers look closely at their constituents opinions as expressed through direct phone calls
" Phone

calls from grasstops leaders and community members with existing relationships with the decision-makers can be very influential

Getting Published/LTEs
A letter to the editor can be a powerful way to educate the community on important issues as well as very useful to advancing advocacy goals Decision-makers are often influenced by letters newspapers have chosen for publication.
" Advocacy tip: If your letter is published, send a copy to your

decision-makers so they can!see what their constituents are writing and reading about. Be sure to include the name of the paper!that published your letter and the date that it was published

Coalition Building
Successful advocacy campaigns bring together a variety of communities of interest who coordinate their actions, tactics, and messages Including a variety of perspectives strengthens advocacy efforts Identify and contact all potential allies and cultivate relationships with them

Coalition Building
Importance of Building a Coalition for Issue-based Work
Broaden support ! Buy-in from community and/or groups that work with impacted community ! Organizations also focused on the issue (like-minded) and/or providing services for the targeted community and the unusual partners ! Organizations and groups take different roles and take on different pieces of the issue based on their specialties
!

Coalition Building
Mission Goals Membership
! Roles ! Capacity

Timeline Communication

Coalition Building
Mission and Goals
What is our goal? ! Is this a short-term or long-term goal? ! What is needed to accomplish our goal?
!

Membership
!

Who do we want at the table?


" " "

Community leaders in favor of your position (both usual and atypical partners) Beneficiaries of the legislation and service organizations serving them Experts in the field

Coalition Building
Racism Sexism Adultism Heteros Classism exism/ Cisgend Imperial erism ism/ Nationa lism

Ableism

Coalition Building?
LGBTQ Immigrant

Coalition Building
Timeline and Communication
! How
"

long will the coalition continue to meet? is the mechanism for communication and how

All goals and commitments need timelines

! What
"

often?

Ineffective communication can lead to ineffective coalition

Lobby Visits
In-district lobby visits are in person meetings with decision-makers in their local district offices with the goal of convincing the decision-maker to agree with you on a policy

Lobby Visits
Setting up meetings
! ! !

Strategically pick targeted decision-makers Use current contacts when applicable to set up meetings

Meeting with decision-makers

Identify a problem ! Establish a solution to the problem or an ask ! Note any questions or comments the decision-maker had about the issue so you can follow-up Follow Up is Key ! Follow up on any action items ! Thank the member for meeting with you and making the right policy decisions ! Bills: Go to leginfo.legislature.ca.gov to see how the member voted on a bill.

Questions? Comments?

Scenarios

Scenarios
Each group will be assigned a scenario Questions for the group to ask?
! What

went well? ! What went wrong? ! Were the students/students rights violated? ! What are our recommendations?

Scenario 1
Jessie is a transgender (MTF) student at a California public high school. Jessie has just recently begun to transition, including at school. Alex is a student in Jessies class who was raised by conservative parents to believe that being transgender is morally wrong. Every day when Jessie comes into the classroom Alex taunts her and calls her names. When Jessie complained to the teacher, the teacher told her that she should stop drawing so much attention to herself and should just wear normal clothes. Please discuss whether the teacher is breaking the law. Also discuss several ways in which Jessie can advocate for herself.

Scenario 2
A group of students at a California public school wants to start a GayStraight Alliance club because they feel that LGBTQ students and allies on campus face a lot of harassment and discrimination. When they asked the principal for permission to start the club, she told them that Gay-Straight Alliance clubs were against school policy because it was inappropriate to talk about sexuality at school. The high school has several other clubs that are allowed to meet on campus at lunch time and after school, including Math Club, Science Club, Chess Club, Knitting Club, Democratic Club, and Mountain Biking Club. The other clubs are allowed to post flyers in the hallways and present in classrooms. Please discuss whether the principal is breaking the law by not allowing the students to form a Gay-Straight Alliance club. Also discuss what the students should do.

Scenario 3
Daniel is the advisor to the GSA club at a local public high school.! He has filed more than twenty complaints with the school on behalf of several different students who participate in the GSA for the bullying they have experiencedfrom both teachers and other students.! One teacher told a student she should go back in the closet and throw away the key. !None of the students has ever been interviewed about what they have experienced, nor has the school ever provided a written response to any of their complaints.

Please discuss what responsibilities the school has ignored.! Also


discuss what Daniel can do to help advocate for his students.

Scenario 4
Renee is a gender nonconforming student starting at a local public high school. She is trying to enroll in a physical education class. Her counselor will only let her sign up for a dance class because that is what all girls get signed up for whereas all the boys get signed up for crosscountry. Renee was also told that on her first day it would be Blue and Pink Day where all the boys have to wear blue and all the girls have to wear pink. Renee doesnt feel comfortable in her dance class and she also doesnt feel comfortable wearing pink to school. Please discuss whether the school is breaking the law.! Also demonstrate what Renee can do to help advocate for herself.

Scenarios
What went well? What went wrong? Were the students/students rights violated? What are our recommendations?

Next Steps

Step 1: Community Advocates Training


Done!

Step 2: Planning for the Meeting


Who needs to be a part of your Advocacy Team? What issue areas does the Advocacy Team want/ need to focus on? What is your approach? What resources do we need to find to leave behind with the district personnel?

Step 3: Assessment
What issue areas need the most attention?
! Overall
" " " " " " "

focus could be on:

Gay Straight Alliance Clubs Inclusive and Unbiased Curriculum Comprehensive Policies Supportive Staff

! What

other areas do you need to focus on?

Trans issues Queer students of color LGBT inclusive anti-bullying programs

Step 4: Phone Call to School District


Main purpose is to set up a meeting with a school district administrator
! The
"

Superintendent is main goal ! Assistant Superintendents can be helpful as well


However, Assistant Superintendents have specific issue areas
! One

position that would be helpful is the districts Complaint Officer

Step 5: Meeting with School District


Bring awareness to issues Address problems Offer solutions

Step 6: Follow-Up
Action items and timelines are crucial for follow-up
! Creates

accountability for advocates and school district personnel

Get direct contact information for school district personnel that you met with to follow-up Keep them accountable

Questions? Comments?

Contact Us
GSA Network ACLU of Southern California

Ariel Bustamante
Southern California Program Coordinator

Joey Hernndez
Community Engagement & Policy Advocate

ariel@gsanetwork.org (213) 482-4021 Gsanetwork.org Facebook.com/gsasocal Makeitbetterproject.org

Jhernandez@aclu-sc.org (213) 977-5268 aclu-sc.org/SRP