We all have the right to say what’s in our minds. However, we should always carefully consider the repercussions of our words. Words can empower, but they can also hurt. Take for example the inconsiderate and vile tweets by Katie Hopkins – a British television personality and columnist:
I really wish Katie would think before she speaks/tweets! Nobody in their right mind should utter, much less appreciate, these kinds of comments. Sort yourself out, Katie!
This week is anti-bullying week in the UK and I want to share the things that I have read, watched and heard about how to fight against bullies. Also, I want to share how bullying affects everyone. Today, I’m posting a link to the film Cyberbully made in 2011.
This week is anti-bullying week in the UK and I want to share the things that I have read, watched and heard about how to fight against bullies. Also, I want to share how bullying affects everyone. In the video below, Dr. Dan Olweus explains what bullying is and why it is important to stop it.
In the next video, children explain their experiences with bullying and how the Olweus Programme helped their school stop bullying.
Kevin Healey, the UK’s leading campaigner for Autism, has started a campaign against bullying which specifically targets people on the Autism Spectrum. People with Autism are prone to being attacked and bullied in school, playgrounds, workplaces and even in the internet mainly due to other people’s ignorance. The social skills of people with Autism develop differently to those without the condition. It has been documented that some of them find it difficult to find and maintain friendships, which leads to depression and suicide ideation in some cases. This is why Kevin is pushing for a law against bullying people with ASD to be written and passed in England.
Internet trolls also target people with ASD, as evidenced by this facebook page:
…and this fake account of Katie Price’s son, Harvey:
These are undoubtedly, utterly disgusting. It is unacceptable to bully anyone at all. But people without ASD have different coping mechanisms than those with ASD. Effects are heightened in those with Autism partly due to their lack of emotional and social development.
What Can You Do?
- Educate yourselves and others about the bullying against people with Autism.
- Spread the word about this campaign. Re-post this article, print out posters from Kevin’s website (CLICK HERE) and distribute them, tell your friends and families about it.
- Write to your MPs, local newspapers and news channels to get more people on board.
Most of us who have been to school or have worked with people have experience and/or witnessed bullying. It is an unpleasant experience. But still, after all the interventions (e.g. Olweus Programme), bullying is still present and it is still terrorizing kids, adults and families all over the world.
What can be done? How can bullying be reduced or eliminated? In my opinion, everyone- from students to patents to teachers up to the government, should actively educate each other on the negative effects of bullying. Since quite a lot of bullying cases stem from bullies’ ignorance of Special Needs and/ or people’s difference, they need to be made aware of this.
The documentary below shows just how devastating the effects of bullying are by featuring accounts of the major key stakeholders (students, teachers, parents, community members).