New bullying legislation may close loophole exposed in Turn to Tara

Posted: Updated:
GREENBURGH -

Outrage over a bullying loophole exposed in a recent Turn to Tara investigation has reached Albany.

Assemblyman Tom Abinanti, of Greenburgh, tells News 12 he plans on co-sponsoring new legislation recently introduced that would change the state laws on bullying to include every school in New York.

Extended Turn to Tara interview: SVU detective shares tips on how to protect your children from cyberbullying

Right now, the Dignity for All Students Act applies only to public schools but not to private or parochial schools.

"Kids in private schools deserve the same protection as kids in public schools, and in this case, the case of Anna, is a perfect example of that. It highlights that people are people, bullying happens everywhere and administrators don't necessarily respond the way we would like them to," says Abinanti.

In the case of Anna Schlesinger, she received a death threat from a fellow student, yet she claims school officials at her former private school in Northern Westchester took little to no corrective action. Schlesinger transferred to another school while the bully suffered no consequences.

The state Assembly resumes session next month. Abinanti says he's hopeful the bill will receive support from both sides of the aisle.

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