Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Stopping Bullying and Teen Suicides

Many listeners have asked how they can help out amid these stories of LGBT suicides, including offering financial support for groups battling this issue. There are many great, hard-working groups, some of them high-profile, to which you can send contributions, but I want to tell about an important effort that needs support.

The Queering Education Research Institute and its Reduction of Stigma in Schools Program does important work at getting to underlying causes of bullying and how to create positive, nurturing environments in school for LGBTQ students. QuERI is out of the the School of Eduction at Syracuse University, where I attended journalism school (the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications). I will be holding an event for QuERI for SU alums in New York in November to bring attention to the research QuERI is conducting on bullying of LGBT teens in schools. Dr. Elizabethe Payne and her colleagues are doing work that is not being done elsewhere. They're bringing together the qualitative data -- why bullying happens, and how the structure and culture of schools contribute. They're also training teachers and have already trained hundreds on how to change that culture in schools and take on bullying.

You can read about QuERI here and contribute a tax-deductible donation here with a credit card, but be sure to write "For QuERI" in the "other, please specify" space. You can also send QuERI a check to the address below. Write the check to the SU School of Education and put "for QuERI" in the comments:

Syracuse University School of Education
Attn: Victoria Kohl
230 Huntington Hall
Syracuse, New York 13244