California State Assemblymember Tom Torlakson of Antioch, California sponsored a Concurrent Resolution to appropriate $180,000 for voluntary participation in workplace bullying training for managers. Unfortunately, this resolution died in the appropriations committee.
Mr. Torlakson, who is running for State Superintendent of Public Instruction has no plans to go forward at this time. He is concerned that that the press would twist the issue into a controversy. Interestingly, the “educational establishment” has often been the lead opponents of the Healthy Workplace Bill because they are loath to lose absolute power over educators who are not in their inner circle.
The floor vote for this in the Assembly was all ‘ayes’ for Democrats and all ‘noes’ for Republicans. The California University Employees Union first brought the idea to the Member. The resolution was voluntary because our state legislature cannot place requirements on University of California schools, as it can on California State University schools for which it serves as regent.
Staffer Monique Ramos from the Torlakson office commented, “What the issue needs is education.” Yes, we first the education to correct and prevent. But in the end, without a legal club, no bully will stop the bad behavior. They are not cognitively capable.
The response to Ramos was, “We’ve been trying for a decade and we will keep up the good cause.” What opponents fail to realize is that this bill would easily pay for itself.
Assemblymember Torlakson’s government site can be reached for ‘thank you messages’ from Bullybusters. At least he tried. http://democrats.assembly.ca.gov/members/a11/
To read the bill analysis, see: http://info.sen.ca.gov/pub/09-10/bill/asm/ab_0051-0100/acr_55_cfa_20090530_134517_asm_floor.html
Bill documents can be read at: http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/cgi-bin/postquery?bill_number=acr_55&sess=CUR
Bill history for ACR #55: http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/pub/09-10/bill/asm/ab_0051-0100/acr_55_cfa_20090630_095254_sen_comm.html
From California Assembly Concurrent Resolution #55:
Urges the training be presented by trainers or educators
with knowledge and expertise in the prevention of
1) Fiscal impact . According to the Assembly
Appropriations Committee analysis, this bill has
estimated one-time costs of approximately $180,000 for
UC to develop the course content and materials and plan
for the implementation of the training. In addition,
there would be ongoing costs of about $50,000 in
consulting contracts to provide the training as well as
additional, but unknown costs associated with staff time
to attend training.