Bully Free Starts With Me: City of Alexandria Recognizes National Bullying Prevention Month

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Bully Free Starts With Me: City of Alexandria Recognizes National Bullying Prevention Month

NOTE: This news release was updated to correct the first date for the Bullying Prevention Conflict Resolution Workshop, which will be held November 12 and 13.

For Immediate Release: October 4, 2019

In recognition of National Bullying Prevention Month in October, Alexandria is hosting activities through the Mayor’s Campaign to End Bullying. This Campaign raises awareness about what bullying is, what to do about it, and how to prevent it.

“The City of Alexandria’s core values include kindness, inclusivity and acceptance,” said Mayor Justin Wilson. “We recognize and respect the dignity of every human being, and I encourage everyone to learn the facts about bullying and join us in making our schools, and our community, bully-free.” At the City Council meeting on October 2, Mayor Wilson presented a proclamation recognizing October as Bullying Prevention Month in Alexandria.

In recognition of Bullying Prevention Month, all Alexandrians are asked to wear green on “Unity Day,” October 11, and to declare their support for a bully-free Alexandria. Bullying Prevention Month activities during October will include sports days, after-school events and a Bullying Prevention Conflict Resolution Workshop on November 12 and 13. Participants in these events will have the opportunity to pledge their support and receive information and resources on how they can help reduce bullying in the community.

According to the National Center for Educational Statistics, more than 3.2 million students are victims of bullying each year. Seventy-one percent of students report incidents of bullying as a problem at their schools. 

Data from the 2016 Alexandria City Public Schools (ACPS) Youth Risk Behavior Survey show that 12% of high school students (grades 10 and 12) reported being bullied on school property and 9% reported being bullied electronically. Of eighth-grade middle school students, 24% reported being bullied on school property and 10% reported being bullied online. Membership in either bully or victim groups is associated with dropping out of school, poor social development, criminal activity and other negative long-term consequences.

This year’s activities are sponsored by the Mayor’s Campaign to End Bullying, initiated by former Alexandria Mayor William Euille in 2014. The Campaign is part of an initiative sponsored by the U.S. Conference of Mayors to wipe out bullying in our nation's schools and communities. Over the last four years, Alexandria City Public Schools, City government agencies, community organizations, youth leaders and residents have worked together to increase the awareness of the negative effects of bullying and prevent bullying among Alexandria’s youth.

For more information about the Campaign and a calendar of events for National Bullying Prevention Month 2019, visit alexandriava.gov/EndBullying.

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

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This news release is available at alexandriava.gov/111656.