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Lawmakers hope to tackle "cyber-bullying" in 2012


Legislation to require school districts to monitor bullying over the Internet or cell phones is expected to be introduced next year.

“My fundamental interest comes from being a mom,” said one of the idea’s supporters, Democratic Senate Minority Leader Gretchen Whitmer. “Everyone has known someone who has been bullied, if it’s not themself, and I think with the technology that’s available to kids today, the bullying does not stay on the program. It follows them 24/7.”

Other lawmakers have reservations about the idea.

“You’re trying to address every possible instance and protect every child possible, and that’s very difficult to do,” said Senate Majority Leader Randy Richardville, adding that he does want the state’s new anti-bullying law to address the issue.

Those who support an anti-cyber-bullying proposal say bullying between students is becoming most prevalent online and over text messages. Governor Rick Snyder has also said he would like lawmakers to deal with the issue of cyber-bullying.