By Natalie Miller
Anti-Bullying week started this Monday to help show that respect is key to all our relationships – both online and offline. Bullying is a problem that happens anywhere and to a lot of people of many different races, age, gender and identity.
A week dedicated for helping to prevent bullying is important because it helps the subject becoming less taboo, especially as the media does not report enough about this.
Respectme is a charity based in Scotland and is Scotland’s anti-bullying service. It works with all adults who play a role in the lives of children and young people. It gives them all the skills and confidence to prevent and respond to bullying, wherever it occurs.
Pamela Graham from respectme said,
“This anti-bullying week, we launched #respectmeans;a social media campaign which urges everyone to play their part in preventing bullying by joining a national conversation and sharing what respect means to them. Respect is key to all our relationships – both online and offline – and it should be at the heart of how we treat each other. Our #respectmeans campaign is a reminder that each and every one of us plays a vital role in creating the respectful cultures in our schools and communities which help prevent bullying.”
Anti-Bullying is not something that should be just spoke about for a week, it is a subject that needs more awareness throughout the year. Bullying can happen everyday in different situations, if you see that someone could be struggling with this you should speak out and offer your help.
“While we focus on anti-bullying week as a means of raising awareness and sharing key messages, it is important that there is a focus on anti-bullying practices all year round, to support children and young people in schools and other settings.”
In the UK, there is a charity called BulliesOut based in England that brings awareness to people of all ages affected by bullying. They promote themselves through social media and newsletters sent through email. They also support schools and in the work environment
“Targeting a wider audience helps stop the misconception about bullying, speaking out and letting people know that it does affect many different people has to be done. It allows more people to talk openly about it, perhaps in many places people wouldn’t normally speak about it. I think the media needs to put more positive emphasis on weeks like this like what organisations I am with already do not as they seem not as keen as they should be when reporting on it.
I would like to think there has been a decrease in bullying but I honestly just don’t think so, again, I think it is a loud conversation ongoing that is happening still. More people should be open to speaking out and should feel comfortable enough to do so.
There is a huge impact on how social media affects bullying, how people can post on certain apps anonymously and post abuse to people with it should be stopped be the people in control of them.”