October: Bullying Prevention Month
By KELLY JOHNSON
To say that bullying is a problem would, arguably, be a major understatement.
Bullying is a worldwide epidemic that can’t be escaped even in local, small communities. For that reason, Stomp Out Bullying was created in 2005, and, to kick off National Bullying Prevention Awareness month in October, Oct. 7 will mark the fifth annual Blue Shirt Day World Day of Bullying Prevention.
On this day, kids and adults are being asked to make Oct. 7 the day that bullying prevention is heard around the world by wearing a Blue Shirt in solidarity to raise awareness on bullying. Individuals can go to stompoutbullying.org to purchase a shirt for $12; $8 from the purchase will go towards the fight against this issue. Individuals can wear any blue shirt to show their stand against bullying in any form.
Stomp Out Bullying focuses on reducing and preventing all types of bullying including cyberbullying and sexting, educating against homophobia, racism and hatred, decreasing school absenteeism, and deterring violence in schools, in communities and online. Its additional focus is on educating parents to help their children be safe and responsible online.
Many individuals who are bullied or cyberbullied experience low self-esteem and depression and often resort to suicide.
“Many do not understand how extreme bullying can get. Parents, teachers and school administrators must use sensitivity in handling these issues,” says Ross Ellis, founder and of Stomp Out Bullying. “They must also work together to make the victims more resilient, as well as working to help change the behavior of the bully. Schools cannot continue to sweep the issue under the rug.”