Newsroom: Press Releases
Sen. Lautenberg Meets With Family of Tyler Clementi
Lautenberg Bill Would Protect College Students From HarassmentLautenberg Press Office, 202-224-3224
Wednesday, February 27, 2013
WASHINGTON, DC—U.S. Senator Frank R. Lautenberg (D-NJ) today met with Joseph, Jane and James Clementi, of Ridgewood, whose son and brother Tyler Clementi took his life in 2010 after his Rutgers University roommate and another student harassed him and violated his privacy over the Internet. The Clementis were in Washington to meet with legislators and build support for Lautenberg's legislation to prevent the harassment of college students.
“The Clementis have bravely turned their grief into action, on behalf of their son Tyler and all college students who suffer harassment,” Lautenberg said. “Bullying on college campuses has damaged too many young adults, and my legislation would require for the first time that colleges take steps to protect students from harassment. It is vitally important that all students have the opportunity to learn in a safe and secure environment and I thank the Clementis for having the strength to fight for reform.”
“We are extremely grateful to Senator Lautenberg for his compassion and leadership,” said Joseph, Jane and James Clementi, the parents and brother of Tyler Clementi. “The Senator has stuck by us through difficult times. He called us in the days after we lost Tyler - and has crafted and - advocated for - the key legislation that bears Tyler's name and that we know will make a difference in millions of lives to come. Today, we were able to work directly with the Senator and bipartisan leaders across Washington on the next steps towards advancing The Tyler Clementi Higher Education and Anti-Harassment Act. We are hopeful with Senator Lautenberg's voice behind it that the bill that is in our son and brother's name will pass in this Congress with strong support.”
Earlier this month, Lautenberg reintroduced the “Tyler Clementi Higher Education Anti-Harassment Act,” legislation that for the first time would require colleges and universities to have in place anti-harassment policies. The bill would provide funding for schools to establish or expand programs to prevent harassment of students. Companion legislation was introduced in the House of Representatives by Rep. Rush Holt (D-NJ-12).
The bill is supported by the Human Rights Campaign; the National Women’s Law Center; the Anti-Defamation League; the Trevor Project; the Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network (GLSEN); People For the American Way; and Campus Pride.
The Clementis recently launched the Tyler Clementi Center at Rutgers University, a collaborative effort between Rutgers and the Tyler Clementi Foundation that will offer lectures, symposia, and seminars on topics including the impact of technologies on youth and emerging adults, especially social media, cyber-bullying, and privacy. The Center will also promote scholarly conversations on youth suicide, adjustment to college life, and the promotion of social environments that are inclusive and safe for all.