”Courage is fire, and bullying is smoke”.-Benjamin Disraeli

CourageBullies would not exist without victims, and they do not just pick on anyone. It is up to you to ensure that you or someone you know does not become a victim.   It is very common for people who are experiencing bullying not to know how to get help. It is always handy to have a safety plan in place. It is recommended that the first thing you should do at the slightest hint of bullying is to tell someone who might help. If you are not sure that you are being bullied, go to the “What is bullying?” section.   It has generally been said that bullies do not just pick on anyone, they try and pick on who they perceive to be the weakest link. This does not mean that if you become a victim of bullying, you are to blame. There are many reasons why people bully, but it is never your fault. All you have to do is take action. NBI will assist in making the bullies become accountable for their actions and also help to prevent or minimise any victim related issues.   A couple of weeks ago, New Zealand woke up to the news that an 11 year boy had stabbed his 11 year old school mate with a scissors. As the story developed, it emerged that the boy who stabbed his school mate had been bullied at school for a year and may have “just snapped”.   What made the news even more disturbing is that the young boy who committed the act had followed the correct procedure. When he realized that he was being bullied he told his 23 year old sister. The sister reported that she approached the school principal with her concerns and unfortunately no action was taken. Speaking to the New Zealand Herald, she said, “I don’t agree with what my brother did, but I know that if my concerns about my brother were taken into consideration, this whole incident could have been prevented.” Needless to say, NBI agrees with her. The system failed both boys.   It made quite good reading to note that the Ministry of Education’s Bullying Prevention Guidelines have suggested that students should be put under closed circuit television surveillance to cut bullying. The Herald reported that some schools have already put cameras near toilet blocks after learning that some children were avoiding using toilets for fear of getting bashed.   The bullying prevention document was made in consultation of an advisory group which included the Children’s Commissioner, police, education unions, principals’ associations and the cyber-safety organisation, Netsafe.   The Ministry of Education stated that it is up to the schools to decide, in consultation with their parent communities, what measures they take to minimise bullying. The ministry said it would support the schools in this process.   A recent study by the European Union Kids Online research programme at London School of Economics and Political Science University revealed that cyberbullying is now more prevalent than children being picked on face to face. The study also showed that the bullying can be two fold in that a child might get bullied at school and when he goes home the bullying is likely to continue on line.   Bullying, especially the form of bullying that targets school going children, is indeed an epidemic that needs to be stopped in its tracks.   “Never be bullied into silence. Never allow yourself to be made a victim. Accept no one’s definition of your life; define yourself”. – Harvey Fierstein.

Comments are closed.