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Hall's Bullying Bill getting attention at the capitol

14 Feb 2013 — 01:44 PM

DES  MOINES, Iowa —She might only be 11 years old, but she is wise beyond her  years. Amber Koenigs has become a familiar face at the Capitol, lobbying  lawmakers about a cause near and dear to her heart.

“Me, her, and some other  people are working on a law to stop bullying because i was bullied so bad I had  to switch schools,” said Koenigs.

The fifth-grader from  Mason City said she was harassed so badly by classmates she couldn't bear to go  to school.

“I was called very mean  names like, I was called 'Amzilla, take off your ugly mask.' All that kind of  stuff,” said Koenigs.

Koenigs, and her mother,  Kim are now pushing a proposed bullying law. If it passes, the law would hold  parents accountable if their child is found to be bullying another  child.
It was drafted by Rep. Chris Hall and modeled after Iowa's truancy  law.

“If you look through the  legislation, it indicates that you have to engage the parents early, and as long  as they are acting in good faith with others to make sure the issue is addressed -- they are never going to be in any trouble,” said Hall.

But if parents choose not  to cooperate or meet with the school district, they could face fines and even  prison time.

“The penalties are there  basically as a leverage point just to make sure that parents are engaged in  conversation,” said Hall.

It's a conversation  Koenigs is not afraid to have with lawmakers.

“What you're doing is  great. We need to have more young people coming up and talking to us, and we  need to listen to you,” said Rep. Ako Abdul Samad.

“I don't want any other child or high school student or any other person to  experience bullying,” said Koenigs.

Please watch the video here.

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