RESOLUTION CHAPTER _______

Senate Concurrent Resolution No. 103—Relative to teen dating and violence prevention.

LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL’S DIGEST

SCR 103, Leyva. Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month.

This measure would proclaim the month of February 2016 as Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month, and would encourage all Californians to observe Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month with programs and activities that raise awareness about teen dating violence.

WHEREAS, Teen dating violence, also known as dating abuse, is a serious and growing problem throughout California; and

WHEREAS, Teen dating violence intervention and prevention programs can help to ensure a positive school climate and safe learning environment for all pupils, address warning signs of dating violence among pupils before behaviors escalate, and protect the safety of targeted students; and

WHEREAS, Each year, an estimated one in 10 American teenagers is physically hurt on purpose by a boyfriend or a girlfriend; and

WHEREAS, According to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), nearly 10 percent of high school students have been hit, slapped, or physically hurt on purpose by a boyfriend or a girlfriend in the past year; and

WHEREAS, According to the American Psychological Association, one in three teens ages 14 to 20 years of age have experienced dating abuse, and about the same number say they have committed dating abuse themselves; and

WHEREAS, According to the CDC, Dating Matters: Strategies to Promote Healthy Teen Relationships, one in four adolescents report verbal, emotional, physical, or sexual dating abuse each year; and

WHEREAS, Forty-three percent of LGBT teens reported experiencing physical dating violence, compared to 29 percent of heterosexual youth; and

WHEREAS, Fifty-nine percent of LGBT teens reported experiencing emotional abuse, compared to 46 percent of heterosexual youth; and

WHEREAS, Teen dating violence has been linked to other forms of violence and aggression against peers, including bullying, sexual harassment, sexual violence, and physical violence; and

WHEREAS, Twenty percent of students with mostly D and F grades have engaged in dating violence in the last year, while only 6 percent of students with mostly A’s have engaged in dating violence; and

WHEREAS, Victims of teen dating violence have increased risk for truancy, dropout, teen pregnancy, suicide, eating disorders, and engaging in other harmful behaviors, such as use of alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs; and

WHEREAS, Nearly one-half of students who experience dating violence have reported that some of the abuse took place on school grounds; and

WHEREAS, Victims of teen dating violence are also at increased risk for carrying a weapon to school, being threatened or injured with a weapon at school, and damaging school property; and

WHEREAS, Pupils who are victims in high school are at higher risk for victimization during college, and adolescent perpetrators of dating violence are more likely to abuse their intimate partners as adults; and

WHEREAS, The establishment of Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month will benefit schools, communities, families, and all youth; now, therefore, be it

Resolved by the Senate of the State of California, the Assembly thereof concurring, That the Legislature proclaims the month of February 2016 as Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month, and supports communities to empower teens to develop healthy and violence-free relationships throughout their lives; and be it further

Resolved, That the Legislature calls upon the people of California, including schools, community groups, youth, and families, to observe Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month with programs and activities that raise awareness about the dynamics of teen dating violence and support young people in learning the skills to have safe and healthy relationships.

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