Each month, 282,000 students are physically assaulted in some way in schools throughout the United States–and that number is only growing. Many children and teens are bullied because of their physical appearance, sexual and gender identity, race, and other features. For a community that prides itself in diversity, acceptance, and equality, we cannot accept this. That is why International STAND UP to Bullying was created, and why Pride Palace wants our community to know about it.
This semi-annual event takes place in both February and November, and focuses on raising awareness about the fatal effects of bullying. Those participating in the day sign and wear pink "pledge shirts" to take a public stand against bullying.
It first took place in February 2008, when 236 schools, workplaces, and organizations participated by wearing pink pledge shirts, and has now grown to thousands of schools, workplaces, and organizations, in at least 25 countries around the globe.The concept is straightforward: Wearing these shirts signals to those being bullied that we understand their struggle, and we are on their side. While it might seem like a simple sign, simply showing victims of bullying that they are not alone can do a lot to help them through their suffering. Wearing shirts also allows us to stand up in a non-confrontational way against bullies, and show that bullying in any manner is wrong.
If you are being bullied, Pride Palace wants you to know that you are loved, and things will get better. Make sure to seek out help from organizations like The Trevor Project or It Gets Better Project if that is the case. For those who are not being bullied, don’t by a bystander, use your position to show your allyship and demonstrate your support by wearing these shirts. Let’s put an end to bullying, together.
Written by Paloma Pinto and David Brothers