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Film Screening, Discussion to Take Steps against Bullying

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In an effort to eliminate the bullying of LGBT youth that often results in suicide, HATCH/Montrose Counseling Center and Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) have joined together to present a special screening of Bullied: A Student, a School, and a Case that Made History.

Southern Poverty Law Center created the “Teaching Tolerance” documentary about LGBT bullying, focusing on the harassment Jamie Nabozny faced at the hands of his classmates and how he decided to fight back in the courts for everyone’s right to be safe in their schools.

“It’s amazingly powerful,” HATCH youth coordinator Deb Murphy said of the film. “When I sat down to watch it, I thought, ‘If this doesn’t make people get it, nothing will.’”

SPLC’s Lecia Brooks introduces the film. Following the screening, Murphy leads a community discussion/brainstorming session focusing on what can be done to stop harassment and bullying of youth.

Murphy told OutSmart that the time to combat bullying with a result-oriented approach had arrived. “No more ‘kumbaya’ meetings,” Murphy said. “This is a very clear call to action.”

Murphy hopes the community brainstorming session following the screening raises as many ideas about eradicating bullying as possible.

“We want to make sure everyone has a voice so we surface as many ideas as we can,” Murphy said. “The next step is to take all these ideas and mold them into some kind of plan.”

Partners scheduled to join HATCH and Southern Poverty Law Center at the meeting include PFLAG Houston and the Anti-Defamation League. More were expected to sign on, Murphy said. At the end of the evening, attendees will be encouraged to learn more at the partner organizations’ information tables.

The event is scheduled for Dec. 7, 6:30 p.m., Montrose Counseling Center, 401 Branard St. Info: hatchyouth.org. —Nancy Ford

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