According to data published in the 2017 Stand Up To Bullying campaign, nearly 1/3 of young people in schools across England reported being bullied, and it doesn’t stop there with 29% of people reporting to have been bullied at work. This research confirms that bullying isn’t confined to the school gates and its victims aren’t limited to young people.
Targeting the wider community, Stand Up To Bullying Day 2017 aims to increase awareness that bullying can take place online and offline, and can have long-lasting and devastating effects. The campaign also aims to create an understanding of the collective role everyone has in tackling the issue, and has recommended the following advice for applying Anti-Bullying policies in your school and place of work:
Anti-Bullying Policies in Schools
Schools in England are legally required to have an anti-bullying policy in place which can be shared with pupils, teachers and parents. The policy should make clear the approach that the school takes to bullying, and ensures that the whole school community are aware of the school’s anti-bullying work and the steps that are taken if bullying is reported. The following steps should be taken when reviewing the Anti-Bullying policy in schools:
- Review your current Anti-Bullying policy with staff members.
- Get feedback from your students – pick students of different age ranges to ensure the feedback is as representative as possible.
- Map out a new approach – Look at examples of other Anti-Bullying policies by clicking here, and look at what you can implement into your own policy.
- Make the policy innovative and interactive i.e. include in school planners, posters or create a small film expanding on the policy.
- Let students lead the change – delegate the development of the Anti-Bullying Ambassadors in all forms to your students and provide support for any resources.
- Promote the new policy to students, staff, parents and governors.
Anti-Bullying Policies in Places of Work
Recent research has highlighted that 60% of public sector workers in the UK had either been bullied or witnessed bullying. All work organisations should have an anti-bullying policy so that employees understand their rights in relation to bullying and harassment in the workplace. Every anti-bullying policy should include:
- A clear statement that bullying and harassment is against the law
- Examples of behaviour which are unacceptable
- Preventative strategies that the organisation will take
- Commitment to confidentiality for any complaint
- Responsibilities of supervisors and managers to respond to complaints made
- Procedures involved in the investigation of harassment case, including timescales involved for action
- Procedures involved in the implementation, review, and monitoring of the policy
- Training for managers to be able to address issues around bullying and harassment
To maximise the effectiveness, it’s vital that employees are placed at the heart of the policy. It is very important that employers and senior managers set a good example – this helps to establish a culture that bullying and harassment are unacceptable. And finally, all staff members at all levels of the hierarchy should be responsible for ensuring the anti-bullying policy is adhered to.