Kansas City councilman proposes city bullying ordinance
6:58 PM, Jul 31, 2013
7:38 PM, Jul 31, 2013
KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Every Missouri school has anti-bullying policies. But Kansas City Councilman Scott Taylor is proposing a city ordinance, claiming school policies are not enough.
"Most of them in general cover only school property. Once you go off school property there's really not coverage for anti-bullying efforts like this," Taylor said.
One by one, people testified at Wednesday's Public Safety Committee hearing that bullying happens after school, off school property and even online.
"Every child has the right to go to school in a safe atmosphere," Taylor said.
No one at the meeting disputed that bullying exists, but questions were raised about the language in the proposed law.
Protestors say it could give police too much discretion to label something as bullying while others might simply consider it just bad behavior.
"Because with every ordinance there is interpretation and discretion and I think the individuals interpreting this have done a good job and will apply it only in those cases where it should be applied," he said.
Taylor is getting plenty of support from citizen groups like the Whole Person.
"Until we raise the awareness, which the city council is attempting to do for this area, we'll never make progress," Whole Person member Sheila Styron said.