Parents in North Tonawanda, New York, have a whole new reason to make sure their children are being nice to other kids — because now, their freedom depends on it.
The city near Buffalo has a new law to protect children from bullies by placing the blame and the punishment on the parent, according to News12.
Parents will now face $250 fines and could see up to 15 days in jail if their son or daughter violates any city law twice in a 90-day period, which includes bullying laws.
The law was put into place after four teens were allegedly kicked out of school for bullying other students.
Some people liked the idea of putting the responsibility on the parent by making jail time an option:
“If the kids can’t face jail time, the parents should.”
While others thought fear could work:
“Have them scared. I think that would be lighting the fire.”
While some parents were all for the new law, Eric Seyfried, a father of a bullied child, feels differently.
His 9-year-old son, Hunter Seyfried, described the pain he feels daily at his elementary school:
“Kids won’t let other kids play with me at recess, and therefore I would just have a tiny little spot I would sit in cooped up, just sitting and watching everybody play, and no one would let me play with them.”
Eric has watched his son suffer through being a victim, but he still questioned punishing parents for having kids who torment others:
“I don’t think we can be 100 percent responsible for the actions of our kids, no matter how hard we try.”
Officials in North Tonawanda explained the law is aimed at minors who are repeat offenders of bullying other kids in public places.
See parents react below: