Blog by Deborah Howe, Senior Policy Officer
The theme of this year's Anti-bullying Week is 'change starts with us'. This means all of us, individuals, employees, or organisations, in every area of our lives. We all have a role to play in challenging bullying behaviour, to be a listening ear, or to provide an environment that demands mutual respect.
This Anti-bullying Week, what change does the Equality Commission want to see? Prevention is better than cure. We have welcomed legislation that will seek to address bullying in schools, and wish to see it fully implemented. But it is more than that, it is the ethos and leadership within schools that will challenge bullying, and it is through the curriculum, embedding equality and respect, that negative behaviours can be challenged effectively. It isn't just for schools, it's for society – we have a role as parents, carers, aunts, uncles, neighbours and friends to challenge bullying behaviour and ensure support for those subjected to it.
We understand the impact of discriminatory treatment – to be treated worse than someone else because of a protected characteristic you possess. It is from our understanding of the enduring impacts of discrimination that we support Anti-bullying Week. We all have a role to play to create a safe environment for everyone, where everyone is heard.
Change starts here.
Change starts now.
Change starts with us.