‘Tackle bullying in the home’
MORE MUST BE DONE to stamp out bullying in homes, says governor of Optimist International Caribbean District, Calvin Hunter.
He said that though the practice was often related to schoolchildren, the actions of adults towards children could also leave scars.
“Bullying really is when there are harmful things being done to our children in a relationship repeatedly where there is imbalance of power or strength. Once the person is being hurt or harmed, then it’s bullying and it’s wrong. As adults sometimes we are bullying our children.
“And most people tend to get emotionally scarred, they get thoughts of suicide and they don’t know how to handle it because that’s a big weight to put on children,” Hunter stressed.
He made this point at the 3Ws Oval, University of the West Indies, Cave Hill, on Saturday, on the sidelines of the Barbados leg of the Third Quarter Regional Conference of Optimist International Caribbean District.
Hunter cited a 2015 UNICEF/Child Development Agency Report conducted in Jamaica which found that six in ten children were bullied. He reasoned that was why the anti-bullying campaign was so important.
One of the ultimate goals was to show that normalising bullying was detrimental.
“It seems as though bullying has been normalised in the Caribbean where we say that is something we usually do . . . but with this campaign we want people to understand that just because it’s normally done doesn’t mean it’s right or acceptable.
“There is physical bullying relationship and cyberbullying and since a lot of our kids are not supposed to be on social media, when they do get there and get bullied, they don’t tell their parents.
“Even if there are relationships where the guardians are now doing these things, we want them to hear our message and realise that what they are doing is wrong and they need to stop,” Hunter added. (TG)