FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 4, 2006
CONTACT: Dannie Tillman, Director of Communications & Coalitions
PHONE: (323) 217-8875 EMAIL: firstname.lastname@example.org
EDUCATION BILL TO PROMOTE DIVERSITY, AUTHORED BY SENATOR SHELIA KUEHL, ADVANCES TO THE SENATE FOR HISTORIC VOTE
Senate Judiciary Committee Passes Bill Sponsored by Equality California to Include Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity in California’s Anti-Bias Rules for School Curriculum
Sacramento, CA – Equality California (EQCA) applauds the Senate Judiciary Committee for advancing a bill to add sexual orientation and gender identity to existing state curriculum anti-bias rules and recognizes the contributions of an important group to our history and culture.
“Today’s vote is the first step toward enhancing the educational experience of all California students,” said Geoffrey Kors, EQCA Executive Director. “Current California law recognizes the importance of teaching about a variety of people and groups that contribute to our diverse society. Adding the important contributions of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community and individuals is in keeping with that educational goal.”
SB 1437, authored by Senator Sheila Kuehl (D-Santa Monica), would prohibit biased curriculum and require that the contributions of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community, like other underrepresented groups, be included in social science curriculum. The bill, sponsored by EQCA, is one of the eight critical pieces of legislation that the organization is spearheading in the Legislature this year.
“I am very grateful for my colleagues support for this bill which simply has to do with fairness and visibility,” said Senator Shelia Kuehl. “Students deserve an education that gives them a full and accurate picture of our history and society rather than one skewed by negative images and stereotypes.”
Alice Kessler, EQCA legislative advocate, Andrea Fazel, program director for Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network, and two students provided compelling testimony before the committee urging the passing of the legislation.
"I believe that many of society's values are rooted in education, and with an inclusive and more diverse curriculum, we can break down the stereotypes that are obstructing the way to acceptance for all," said Juliana Spector, a senior from Piedmont High School in Oakland, California.
AYES: Dunn, Escutia, Kuehl
Note: There is one vacancy on this committee
Founded in 1998, Equality California is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, grassroots-based, statewide advocacy organization whose mission is to achieve equality and civil rights of all lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) Californians. Equality California is one of the largest and fastest growing statewide LGBT organizations in the country. We can be contacted through our website at www.eqca.org.
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