Bullying and the Toll it Takes
Posted by Medavie Blue Cross on February 22, 2023
We all remember the bullies that picked on kids at school, the ones that name-called, teased or tried to intimidate — the ones who made others feel left out.
As adults, we have come to understand more clearly how bullying can deeply wound children, in some cases permanently.
Canada has witnessed a rise in bullying as the public has devoted greater attention to the issue in recent years. Today, it’s a major public safety and health concern.
Bullying is defined as "willful, repeated aggressive behaviour with negative intent used by a child to maintain power over another child." The result is "a victimized child caught in an abusive relationship."
The most common forms are physical, verbal, social and cyberbullying, some of which may be considered illegal. They can range from tormenting through texts and emails to creating a fake online profile to ruin someone’s reputation.
Pink Shirt Day is a global event to raise awareness and funds for anti-bullying programs that originated in small-town Nova Scotia.
It was here, in 2007, that David Shepherd, Travis Price and their friends organized a high-school protest in sympathy with a younger student who was bullied for wearing a pink shirt. They distributed pink shirts for other boys at the school to wear and stand up to the bullies.
Their campaign took off and has grown each year into a movement, with support and participation expanding worldwide. Last year alone, people in more than 110 countries marked Pink Shirt Day by making donations and sharing social media posts.