Franken pushes for sexual orientation protection in schoolby Tom Weber, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — Sen. Al Franken will try again to boost federal civil rights protections for school students based on sexual orientation.
The Minnesota DFLer says the effort is aimed at curbing the bullying of gay and lesbian students and giving them the same protections that current law offers against racial or sexual discrimination.
Franken got emotional on the Senate floor while talking about Justin Aaberg, a Minnesota teen who killed himself last summer and who would have turned 16 this week.
"But instead I know his family and friends will be missing him, terribly. I knew they were yesterday, and I know they still are today," he said. " No child should have to go through the pain that Justin went through at school."
Franken is reintroducing legislation that didn't pass last session. Earlier today, the White House conducted a summit on bullying and earlier this week, officials in Minnesota held their own bullying summit in Minneapolis.