City of Alexandria Observes Bullying Prevention Month

Page updated on Oct 12, 2021 at 2:22 PM

City of Alexandria Observes Bullying Prevention Month

For Immediate Release: October 12, 2021

In recognition of National Bullying Prevention Month in October, the Mayor’s Campaign to End Bullying encourages Alexandrians to learn more about bullying, what to do about it and how to prevent it. Alexandria Mayor Justin Wilson will present a proclamation recognizing October as Bullying Prevention Month in Alexandria at the City Council meeting today, October 12 at 7 p.m. The event will occur in the City Council Chamber, on the second floor of City Hall, 301 King St.

“The City of Alexandria is committed to kindness, inclusivity and acceptance, and we recognize and uphold the dignity of every human being,” said Mayor Wilson. “I encourage everyone to learn the facts about bullying and help us make our schools and our community bully-free. We are pleased that awareness is being expanded, beyond bullying of youth in schools, to include elder abuse. Our elders are a precious resource in our community, and they deserve respect and safety.” 

According to the National Council on Aging, approximately 1 in 10 Americans aged 60 and older have experienced elder abuse, which includes physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, exploitation, neglect, and abandonment. Perpetrators include children, other family members, and spouses—as well as staff at nursing homes, assisted living, and other facilities. This year, Senior Services of Alexandria and the City’s Commission on Aging have joined the Bullying Prevention Month as partners to increase public awareness of elder abuse. 

The 2017 Alexandria City Public Schools (ACPS) Youth Risk Behavior Survey shows that 13% of high school students reported being bullied on school property and 10% reported being bullied electronically. Of middle school students, 25% reported being bullied on school property and 13% reported being bullied online. 

While the COVID-19 pandemic limits in-person activities this year, everyone can recognize Bullying Prevention Month in some way. Alexandrians are asked to pledge their support for a bully-free Alexandria; follow @BullyFreeAlexVA on Twitter; and visit the Mayor's Campaign to End Bullying in Alexandria webpage to learn about prevention and anti-bullying activities.

Players, coaches, parents, administrators and spectators are asked to wear green and take the pledge at Alexandria All Sports Bully-Free Saturdays throughout October. City recreation centers will host after-school events incorporating art, drama and discussions on bullying prevention and education. ACPS students can also participate in a Red Ribbon Campaign Poster Contest on bullying awareness to help prevent drug use. The contest, based on this year’s theme, “Drug Free Looks Like Me,” runs from October 23 through October 30. 

This year’s observance is sponsored by the Mayor’s Campaign to End Bullying, part of a nationwide initiative by the U.S. Conference of Mayors. Alexandria City Public Schools; City government agencies; community organizations; youth leaders and residents have joined together to heighten awareness of bullying’s negative effects and to prevent bullying.

Visit alexandriava.gov/EndBullying for more information about the campaign, National Bullying Prevention Month 2021 events, and anti-bullying resources.

For inquiries from the news media only, contact Andrea Blackford, Senior Communications Officer, at andrea.blackford@alexandriava.gov or 703.746.3959.

For reasonable disability accommodation, contact michael.johnson@alexandriava.gov or call 703.746.5571, Virginia Relay 711.

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This news release is available at alexandriava.gov/124609.

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