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Mass. governor to sign ADL-backed bill against bullying

BOSTON (JTA) — A tough anti-bullying bill pressed by the Anti-Defamation League is set to be signed into law in Massachusetts.

Gov. Deval Patrick is expected to sign the measure, which is aimed at schools and also covers cyberbullying, on Monday. The bill was adopted last week by a unanimous vote of both branches of the state Legislature.

For two years the New England Regional office of the Anti-Defamation League has led a coalition of groups advocating for adoption of the measure.

The bill gained a high profile following the separate suicides of two Massachusetts teens who were bullied in and out of school, the most recent case involving cyberbullying through text messaging.

ADL New England Regional director Derrek Shulman called the bill a serious approach to counteract the destructive act of bullying with provisions for training, the mandating of reporting and investigating incidents, and parent notification.

Massachusetts will become the 42nd state to pass anti-bullying legislation.
 

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