Publication Title: 
Trauma, Violence, & Abuse
Publication Date: 
Saturday, December 30, 2023

Bullying is one of the most common forms of youth violence and is associated with myriad adverse consequences over the life course. There has been increasing interest in examining whether anti-bullying legislation is effective in preventing bullying victimization and its negative effects. However, a lack of data structures that comprehensively and longitudinally assess anti-bullying legislation and its provisions has hampered this effort. This article provides 18 years of data (1999–2017) on anti-bullying legislation and amendments across 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia, which we are making publicly available at This article describes how the legal content analysis was conducted, provides information on the reliability of the coding, and details provisions of the legislation that were coded, such as funding provisions and enumerated groups (a total of 122 individual codes are provided). Over 90% of states had at least one amendment to their legislation during this 18-year period (range: 0–22; Mean = 6.1), highlighting both the evolving content of anti-bullying statutes and the importance of tracking these changes with longitudinal data. Additionally, the authors offer illustrative examples of the kinds of research questions that might be pursued with these new data. For instance, using survival analyses, the authors show that a variety of state characteristics (e.g., political leaning of state legislatures) predict time to adoption of key provisions of anti-bullying legislation (e.g., the comprehensiveness of legal provisions). Finally, the authors end with a discussion of how the dataset might be used in future research on the efficacy of anti-bullying legislation.