By: Mike Springer
March 13, 2013
Tallahassee, FL-Before a Florida House Committee, members listened to House Bill 609. The bill bans the bullying or harassment of Florida students and school staff through websites, instant messages and other online mediums in what's become better known as Cyberbullying.
"It's a growing problem in our school systems and in society as a whole. We're seeing a lot of instances where young people are starting instances online via a Facebook or Instagram various social services and it escalates once they get to school or out in the community," said representative Reggie Fullwood, Democrat.
Under the bill, bullying is defined as 'systematically and chronically inflicting physical hurt or psychological distress on one or more students that may involve : Teasing, Social Exclusion, Threats, Intimidation, Stalking, Humiliation and even causing Emotional Pain or Discomfort among other things.
While the proposed bill doesn't outline any specific consequences for those caught cyberbullying, Fullwood hopes it can still cuts down on those incidents.
"There's no solid solution, but the bill at least forces the issue to for principals and administrators to address these types of issues when they happen inside the schools.," said Fullwood.
Fullwood says if the bill passes another committee, he hopes to bring it to the Floor of the House in a few weeks.
The bill would take effect July 1.