Michigan Governor Rick Snyder has signed into law new anti-bullying legislation, admitting that he was a target for bullies in school. During the signing ceremony, Snyder said he was regularly beaten and pushed around. “I was a victim of bullying. I was bullied in elementary school, in middle school and in high school because I was a nerd,” the governor said.

The law requires Michigan school districts to adopt an anti-bullying policy within six months. Snyder was surrounded by Republican and Democratic lawmakers, as well as the parents of three teens who committed suicide after bullying by classmates. “I’m very proud to be part of this,” Snyder said. “Bullying is just wrong and bad.”

Kevin Epling of East Lansing, who made enacting an anti-bullying law in Michigan his mission after his son’s suicide in 2002, said the bill is “a firm foundation” for the start of anti-bullying programs in schools. “Today, we won one for the kids of Michigan, but it took us a very long time,” Epling said. “We didn’t know it would take six years, but we stuck with it.”

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