One Out Of Five Kids Admits To Bullying

The provincial government has declared February 25 as anti-bullying day. Locally, UVic psychologist Dr. Bonnie Leadbeater—along with a team of UVic researchers and community partners—is helping schools present a united front against bullying by developing and evaluating the WITS programs for the prevention of peer victimization in elementary schools. The WITS acronym stands for “Walk away,” “Ignore,” “Talk it out” (use words not fists), and “Seek help.” The award-winning WITS Program ( ) is the only bully-prevention program that reaches out beyond schools and classrooms to unite community-based emergency service professionals, educators, and parents to protect young children from peer victimization.
         “Bullying is everyone’s problem,” says Leadbeater. “Our children deserve to feel safe in their schools, neighbourhoods, and homes.”
         Resources, which can be downloaded (, include manuals for everyone including community-based, “uniformed” professionals (police, paramedics, fire-fighters); student athletes; classroom teachers; and siblings and parents.

10 tips to share with your children to prevent bullying:
1. If it’s hard for you to stand up for yourself, ignore the bullying and walk away, then tell someone who can help.
2. Get funny! Humour shows you're not bothered.
3. Be assertive, not aggressive.
4. Fighting back makes the bullying worse.
5. Remember that telling is not tattling.
6. If you walk away and get help, you are part of the solution. If you stay and watch, you are part of the problem.
7. Put yourself in the other kid’s shoes. Would you want to be picked on, put down, or left out?
8. Apologize to the kids you have bullied.
9. Be a real leader. Real leaders treat others with respect.
10. Remember that no one deserves to be bullied!

-- 30 --

Media contacts

>Dr. Bonnie Leadbeater (Psychology) at 250-721-7523 or

Maria Lironi (UVic Communications) at 250-721-6139 or

In this story

Keywords: kids, admits, bullying

Related stories