Illinois State Representative Margaret Croke has pushed legislation to strengthen and expand the current Illinois cyber-bullying statute.
House Bill 3425 expands the definition of bullying to include additional protected characteristics including; physical appearance, socioeconomic status, academic status, pregnancy, parenting status, and homelessness.
In addition, the bill would create new requirements for the Illinois State Board of Education to collect data about the issue, and guarantee parents and guardians are notified about incidents within 24 hours when it occurs.
“Bullying is no longer a relegated to the school infrastructure it really is this incessant thing where I could go home and can continue to be attacked or bullied it's the weekend and a kid is still attacked in Bully and I think that parents as parents we should have the agency to be able to monitor our children.”
"I wanted to update the current statute to be more relevant for today's bullying atmosphere honestly and that meant for me updating how quickly parents are notified of a bullying incident.”
Rep. Croke added that the bill hadn't been updated since 2012.
House Bill 3425 passed in the House in March 2023, and the Senate in May 2023. The bill is now headed to Governor Pritzker's desk to be signed.
“This legislation helps ensure that our institutions are prepared to address instances of cyberbullying, and can understand when and why they occur so we can prevent them from happening in the first place. I’m grateful to Senator Sara Feigenholtz for her leadership in moving this bill through the Senate, and I’m thrilled to see it heading to Governor Pritzker for signature. As the mother to two young children, I know that this legislation is a win for parents, students, and schools across our state.”
To learn more about HB3425 click here.