Question: What is bullying?
Answer: Making someone else feel scared, worthless, lonely, guilty or upset – regardless of whether they’ve done anything to provoke it. It usually takes place over and over again.
Fact: It can happen on the computer (cyberbullying), at home, on your mobile, in school, at uni and even in the workplace.
Bullying is when someone does something to hurt you, it could be;
Verbal bullying which can include name calling, teasing, making inappropriate comments about you and making threats towards you or someone you care about.
Social bullying can include leaving people out of activities on purpose, spreading rumours about you or your family, embarrassing you in public.
Physical bullying which can include hitting, kicking, spitting or pushing you, this can also include people breaking your possessions.
Cyber Bullying is when people use the internet, email, online games or any form of technology to hurt, tease or humiliate you.
People can get bullied in many different ways, you may experience one or several of the things listed above. People are bullied for all sorts of reasons; the way they look, the clothes they wear, some people don’t even know why they are being bullied.
Did you know that you have rights? That there are laws to protect you?
The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child documents the rights of each child, these 42 rights apply to all children and young people in the United Kingdom. This includes rights to allow young people to have a safe, healthy and happy life, one of your rights is;
Children have the right to say what they think should happen, when adults are making decisions that affect them, and to have their opinions taken into account.
This means that when adults are making decisions that affect you, you have the right to say what you think should happen and have your opinions taken into account.
By law all schools must have a behaviour policy and procedure which covers bullying, Section 89 of the Education and Inspections Act (2006) documents that ‘every school must have measures to encourage good behaviour and prevent all forms of bullying amongst pupils’
Behaviour policies are in every school, bullying will either be documented in this or in an individual bullying policy which ever one your school has should be made available to anyone who requests them. If you haven’t had a copy ask at reception, the policy documents what the school will do to support you and the procedures they take when dealing with bullying
Equality Act 2010
Under the Equality Act it is illegal to harass, victimise or discriminate against anyone because of their age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sex and sexual orientation.
Schools have a legal duty to meet the terms the Equality Act. Staff must act to prevent harassment, victimisation and discrimination within the school.
Human Rights Act 1998 The Human Rights Act is a list of things people in the UK have a right to, all public bodies which includes schools have to follow.
Schools have to have policies that comply with the Act, in particular Article 3 which states ’No one shall be subjected to torture or to inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment’ if schools are aware you are being treated badly they must intervene to stop it.
If you don’t feel you are being listened too or taken seriously you can always ask for an advocate who will help you express your wishes and feelings. Second Voice Advocacy service is independent to the school and can help you express your wishes and feelings in meetings. You can contact Second Voice by yourself, through a parent or a teacher in school.
Telephone: 01978 295600
Childline are a telephone counselling and advice service for children and young people who are experiencing bullying or any other problem or danger.
Childnet offer advice and information about how to protect children from potential risks online. www.childnet.com
The NSPCC provide a helpline for anyone, including children, concerned about, involved in, or at risk of child abuse.
Guide to internet safety and safe surfing for young people run by CEOP A National Crime Agency Command.
Red Balloon supports young people who self-exclude or are isolated at school because of bullying or other trauma.
An organisation that offers advice on all aspects of bullying is bullying.co.uk
Meic Cymru are an information and advice line you can contact should you need to speak to someoneabout any situation.
If you would like more information on this topic or you have questions please call into the INFO Shop or contact us on 01978 295600 / Instant message. If you leave us a message we will get back to you as soon as we can.