Safe communities group has tips against bullies

Parents, students and concerned citizens gathered at Palmerston Public School on May 2 to discuss issues surrounding bullying.

Child and youth counsellors Joanne Worth and Jill Hope of  the Upper Grand District School Board offered a presentation that identified the three types of bullying: social,  physical and verbal. They also addressed prevention keys and a plan for parents in the event that they find their child is being bullied or is showing signs of being a bully.

The counsellors detailed resources available through the school board and social sites such as Kids Help Phone. They also stressed the importance of maintaining and encouraging an open dialogue at all levels: parents, teachers, victims and aggressors.

Worth and Hope noted that once an aggressor learns the impact bullying has, they are often dumbfounded and remorseful.

Teaching empathy and getting students to recognize the impact of their words and actions is a main focus for reducing bullying.

The seminar, jointly hosted by Minto and Mapleton safe community committees, was followed by a question and answer period.

Those committees work with law enforcement to maintain a safe community environment through programs such as Neighbourhood Watch, road safety and more.