The shock of teen suicide in New York State over the recent year serves as a grave reminder of the potentially lethal role cyberbullying can play as a trigger. It is no secret that teens account for the highest percentage of suicides in the United States, and these stories have become all too common in recent years. Currently, there are no laws in New York State protecting children and teens from online harassment from peers. Parents and schools are unable to fully assist students facing such attacks. Rapid growth in social media and digital communication technology requires a matching increase in protections for its youth users. In response to these teen deaths, New Yorkers are looking to Albany to develop such legal tools.
Through this petition, we seek to encourage New York lawmakers to bring the issue of Cyberbullying to committee and initiate a conversation to determine if current laws are properly protecting victims of online peer attacks.
We, the undersigned, know that this effort must be accompanied by a state-wide community commitment to supporting and protecting our youth from the dangers of social media and digital communication technology though education and resource development on the local level. We understand that legislation may only serve as a partial solution but support it in hopes that it will aid our local efforts to improve the health and safety of our youth.
This mission is in honor of Jamey Rodemeyer and all teens who resorted to suicide due to lack of appropriate legal resources. May we come together to save the lives of our youth.