Website offers variety of resources to combat bullying

The U.S. Departments of Education, Health and Human Services and Justice have expanded an online collection of resources to help reduce bullying in America’s homes, schools, playgrounds and on the Internet.

StopBullying.gov (http://www.stopbullying.gov/) has webpages targeting the very young, teenagers, young adults, educators and parents alike.

On the educator Web page, resources include topical areas such as responding to bullying, immediate intervention, what to do when bullying is suspected and/or confirmed, monitoring and reporting and follow-up interventions.

According to the website, “Bullying is a widespread and serious problem that can happen anywhere.  It is not a phase children have to go through, it is not ‘just messing around,’ and it is not something to grow out of.  Bullying can cause serious and lasting harm.”

Although definitions of bullying vary, most agree that bullying involves:

  • Imbalance of power: People who bully use their power to control or harm and the people being bullied may have a hard time defending themselves.
  • Intent to cause harm: Actions done by accident are not bullying; the person bullying has a goal to cause harm.
  • Repetition: Incidents of bullying happen to the same person over and over by the same person or group.

Types of Bullying

Bullying can take many forms. Examples include:

  • Verbal: name-calling, teasing
  • Social: spreading rumors, leaving people out on purpose, breaking up friendships 
  • Physical: hitting, punching, shoving
  • Cyberbullying:using the Internet, mobile phones or other digital technologies to harm others

An act of bullying may fit into more than one of these groups.

For more information, visithttp://www.stopbullying.gov/.

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