EDITORIAL: Anti-bullying day is a good step

Pink shirts will be plentiful today, to bring awareness to consequences

Schools across the West Shore, Greater Victoria and the province stand united today (Feb. 25) in hopes of bringing an end to the devastating effects bullying can have on young lives.

Pink Shirt Day takes place across B.C. today. The anti-bullying day is celebrated across Canada and in 25 countries around the world on other dates. The movement aims to eliminate schoolyard bullying and alleviate the negative consequences bullying can have on children in school.

Bullying can often be life-altering for the families of victims, their schoolmates and their communities. They can also be tragic, as in the case of Shoreline Community School student Reena Virk, who died at the hands of her tormenters under the Craigflower Bridge in 1997.

The statistics tell a frightening tale. Bullying is not just an occasional event.

According to a report from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, at least one in three teenaged students in Canada report being bullied, while 47 per cent of Canadian parents report having a child who has been a victim of bullying.

Among adult Canadians, 38 per cent of males and 30 per cent of females report having experienced occasional or frequent bullying during their school years.

The numbers are even worse for students who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender, as the rate of discrimination against them is three times higher than for heterosexual youth. Any participation in bullying increases risk of suicidal ideas in youth.

The growing popularity of events such as Pink Shirt Day show that Canadians are committed to putting an end to the potentially tragic results of bullying.

Strategies and legislation aimed at preventing bullying and helping victims of bullying are certainly worthwhile ventures. But it bears noting that no one is born a bully, it is a behaviour children learn from those around them.

It is something parents need to keep in mind the next time they’re angered by a passing motorist or something that takes place in the check-out line or neighbourhood rink.

Just Posted

Greater Victoria teachers experienced more than 30 incidents of violence from students in one month

Shuttered behavioural programs, lack of resources creates challenges for local schools

Esquimalt High robotics team heads to international competition

The Esquimalt Atom Smashers will participate in the FIRST Robotics Canada competition

Canadian alcohol policy gets failing grade from UVic researchers

Canadian provinces and territories collectively achieved less than half of their potential to reduce alcohol related harm

Island playoffs underway at Oak Bay High

Home team vies for fifth straight Island title

Sell regulated heroin to curb B.C.’s overdose problem: report

B.C. Centre on Substance Use points to organized crime and money-laundering as contributing factors

POLL: Will you be wearing pink to take a stand against bullying

Schools and workplaces across Greater Victoria and around the province will be… Continue reading

B.C. legislature moving suspended staff controversy to outside review

Whale watching, Seattle Mariners trips billed as emergency preparedness, Speaker Darryl Plecas says

More people signing up for compulsory vaccines

Maple Ridge mom says public tired of hearing about measles

UPDATE: Man charged in stabbing of woman, off-duty cop outside B.C. elementary school

Manoj George, 49, is facing two counts of aggravated assault and two counts of assault with a weapon after the incident on Wednesday, Feb. 20.

Federal fisheries minister calls for precautionary approach to fish farming

Government still reviewing Federal Court’s decision on PRV – Wilkinson

Why do zebras have stripes? Perhaps to dazzle away flies

Researchers from University of Bristol look into why zebras have stripes

Poll: More voters believe Canada doing worse under Trudeau government

22 per cent believed the country is doing better and 27 per cent said things are the same

HBC shuttering Home Outfitters across Canada

North America’s oldest retailer is revamping its various stores to improve profitability

Most Read