It was pointed out to me that this link was "broken". In fact, the Catholic Sentinel archives has no mention of Joy Wallace I could find. So, here is the entire article.
Catholic Sentinel photo by Ed LangloisJoy Wallace leads a group that works with schools to stop bullying.
6/16/2014 4:32:00 PM By Ed Langlois Joy Wallace thinks no one should get picked on for who they are.
A member of St. Andrew Parish in Northeast Portland, she has received a major award from the Oregon Education Association for defusing bullying in schools and aiding students who have been bullied.
Wallace, 68, is a founder and co-chair of the all-volunteer Oregon Safe Schools and Communities Coalition.
Among the youths most often bullied are those who are homosexual or transgender. Children with disabilities and learning differences also get persecuted.
When parents are dissatisfied with answers and actions from schools, they come to Wallace. The coalition helps the students and their families by responding vigorously to bullying — sometimes with volunteer lawyers — and by offering education and events to halt bullying and harassment before it begins. The coalition also collects data, which lawmakers use to hone policy.
“You can’t concentrate to learn mathematics if you fear your school environment,” Wallace says.
One of the hopes is to reduce suicide among victims of bullying.
“I guess I have a passion for making things more fair for people,” she explains, crediting Catholic social teaching for refining her passions.
Wallace received the OEA’s Ed Elliott Human Rights Award, named after an Oregon educator who worked for inclusivity in public schools during the civil rights struggles of the 1960s. The award goes to people who have made a sustained contribution to human rights in Oregon. When news of the recognition was announced after Mass at St. Andrew, worshipers gave Wallace a standing ovation.
Wallace, who became Catholic in 1988, was a high school teacher intent on social justice. While working in Corvallis, she noticed bullying just outside her classroom and felt a dearth of resources for making schools safer.
In 2001, four years after a move to Portland, she attended a conference on ending bullying and met others who felt like her. The coalition emerged.
A natural teacher, Wallace leads the group so it tells the history of discrimination, with an emphasis on ethical decision making. When the Oregon Legislature passed a tough anti-bullying law in 2009, the coalition took the lead in seeing to it that K-12 schools implement the policy. Organizers convene meetings so district representatives can become stronger advocates at their schools.
State guidelines don’t apply to private schools, but Wallace thinks the values at Catholic schools are a good start against discrimination. She urges Catholic school officials to monitor their institutions and look over the state policy.
Included in the coalition is the “Welcoming the Whole Family” Committee from St. Andrew Parish, which seeks to make gay and lesbians feel at home in the Catholic Church.
Wallace feels encouraged because new federal requirements against bullying have come out and are strong. “Having legislation is a good first step to having safer schools,” she says.
Now retired except for volunteering, Wallace once worked as development director for the Jesuit Volunteer Corps and the Franciscan Spiritual Center.
“She has deep roots in Catholic social justice teaching,” says Jane Braunger, also a member of St. Andrew’s. “It is also about hospitality for her. And I find her upbeat. She is never harsh in her criticism. She is about rolling up her sleeves and getting work done.”