Maine bills target cyberbullying

Posted April 22, 2011, at 5:23 a.m.
Last modified April 22, 2011, at 2:21 p.m.

AUGUSTA, Maine — Cyberbullying is being targeted by a pair of bills Maine lawmakers are taking up.

Democratic Rep. Don Pilon of Saco is sponsoring a bill focusing on the prevention of bullying via electronic devices. It would require school boards to adopt policies on cyberbullying and include a procedure to report offensive behavior to authorities. The bill also makes bullying a civil violation.

Similar legislation by Democratic Rep. Terry Morrison of South Portland would require a bullying prevention policy to include cyberbullying by Aug. 15, 2012. The two bills are expected to be combined in a single bill.

Supporters say bullying — especially by electronic messaging or cell phones — has grown into a huge problem.

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