Similar to the Gay-Straight Alliance program found in schools throughout the United States, Australian LGBTI youth programs have fought to enlighten students of all backgrounds and inspire unity of cultures.
After learning of the essential anti-bullying efforts, misinformed parents and conservatives have launched a campaign against the Safe Schools program for fear that might be too influential on the sexual tendencies of Australian youth.
What these parents and conservative citizens don’t understand is the harmful and permanent effects that bullying and misinformation can have on the entire community. Children fear for their lives every day and often resort to self-harm or suicide due to lack of support and compassion.
The Safe Schools program aims to assist youth in healthy expression of their individuality from gender identity, to sexual preference, to overall curiosity.
Many supporters of the “scare” campaign fear that the program is encouraging underage sex and inappropriate behavior among students, but their energy is being focused on the wrong facets of the anti-bullying efforts.
Instead of offering positive reinforcement for authorities behind the program, parents and conservatives are creating a barrier between the protectors of Australian youth, which only further promotes the discrimination that called for the educational program in the first place.
How might concerned parents offer suggestions to the program without compromising the overall nature of LGBTI youth health and safety?