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Government of British Columbia - NEWS RELEASE

For Immediate Release

2008OTP0041-000246

Feb. 25, 2008

Office of the Premier

Ministry of Education

PROVINCE PROCLAIMS ANTI-BULLYING DAY

VANCOUVER - The Province is proclaiming Feb. 27 as Anti-Bullying Day to support efforts to end bullying in schools and communities across the province, Premier Gordon Campbell announced today.

"Nobody likes a bully and we all have to take a stand to stop bullying," said Campbell. "Anti-Bullying Day is a celebration of those who take action to stop bullies in our schools and around the province. It starts with all of us saying bullying is wrong and then standing up for those who become targets. We all benefit when everyone feels safe and secure in their schools, neighbourhoods and province."

Anti-Bullying Day highlights British Columbia's commitment to a safe and inclusive province and is an opportunity to actively promote respectful and kind behaviour among citizens. It recognizes efforts to build communities that foster respect, fairness, equity and compassion, and to celebrate the actions of individuals, schools and communities to address bullying, harassment and intimidation.

"Student safety is a top priority, and we know that when students feel safe and accepted among their peers, they do better at school," said Education Minister Shirley Bond. "Anti-Bullying Day is another step towards uniting as a province to find tangible solutions so that all British Columbians can feel safe and achieve their best."

Last spring, the Province passed legislation requiring all B.C. schools have codes of conduct for their students that meet provincial standards. This step fulfills a platform commitment to institute "zero tolerance" of bullying in B.C. schools. The Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General are also updating the Focus on Bullying and Focus on Harassment and Intimidation guides, and a parent brochure will soon be in schools to help families better understand their shared role with schools in bullying prevention.

"The Province thanks CKNW and Christy Clark for helping to promote Anti-Bullying Day in B.C.," said Campbell. "We encourage everyone to wear pink on Feb. 27 to show your opposition to bullying - I know I will."

Anti-Bullying Day complements the Province's beliefs that a healthy environment and educated populace are essential to healthy human development, and that a safe, humane society is the outcome of an enlightened, prosperous and caring community.

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1 backgrounder(s) attached.

Media contact:

Dale Steeves
Communications Director
Office of the Premier
250 387-6605

Public Affairs Bureau
Ministry of Education
250 356-5963