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Hillsborough County passes inclusive safe school policy

in The Bay and the 'Burg by

From Equality Florida: Just hours ago, the Hillsborough County School Board voted unanimously to add gender identity to the Nondiscrimination and Equal Employment Policy for Hillsborough County Public Schools. The Hillsborough policy already included Sexual orientation protections and today’s amendment now provides gender identity protections for the 207,549 students who make up the 3rd largest school district in Florida.

Currently 64% of Florida students attend schools that ban anti-gay bullying and more than half of those districts have now added “gender identity” to their policies.

Equality Florida has worked with school districts across the state to enact strong and inclusive non-discrimination and anti-bullying policies.

Over the past five months, Equality Florida staff, volunteers and community allies have met with school board members to educate them on the importance of a fully inclusive policy. The addition of these critical protections for both students and district employees alike passed without opposition.

Special thanks to Hillsborough County School Board member April Griffin, who led the effort.

“With this vote, Hillsborough County Public Schools institutes a common sense non-discrimination policy that sets a standard of safety and respect for all students, staff and faculty. I am proud to have sponsored this positive change in our district culture. I look forward to continue championing tolerance and civility in our community.”

– April Griffin, Hillsborough County School Board

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including,,, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.

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