Jill is determined to make the world safer for today’s youth and her fellow Real Housewives have her back!
The Real Housewives of New York City — Alex McCord, Ramona Singer, Countess LuAnn de Lesseps and Kelly Bensimon — are joining co-star Jill Zarin in the fight against bullying. The women attended a luncheon and fashion show, hosted by Jill, to raise funds and support various anti-bullying projects (sponsored by Ricki Freeman’s Teri Jon clothing line) on Nov. 8.
“No one should be bullied for any reason, and no one should ever have to be afraid or intimidated in the classroom or in their life because of their sexual orientation or gender identity,” says Jill, who partnered with the NOH8 campaign in August to fight for marriage equality and anti-discrimination.
“The self-esteem issues that kids and teens experience often stay with them for life, and in some tragic cases, cause them to end it,” adds Alex. “I was one of the lucky ones that never had bullying problems, but there are many adolescents who do. While Simon’s and my 5- and 7-year-old sons have special computer classes and socialization exercises in school, today’s teens didn’t get that experience from a young age. Most young adults grew up with the internet as the wild west, and there have been too many online showdowns that have resulted, at best, in hurt feelings and, at worst, in tragedy.”
“It’s a lot of pressure for young people,” says Alex, highlighting the importance of Jill’s initiative to start an anti-bullying hotline. “It’s important to provide safe haven resources and suicide hot-lines geared toward youths affected by bullying.”
“I have also joined forces with GLAAD as a spokesperson for their anti-LGBT bullying initiatives and am excited to host the 2010 GLAAD OutAuction on Nov. 21,” Jill says. “My Housewives co-stars are supporting the event along with celebrities such as Randy Jackson, Fran Drescher, Johnny Weir, Kyra Sedgwick, Heather McDonald and Robbie Williams.”