Vernon groups in the pink for anti-bullying day

Pink Shirt Day Wednesday, Feb. 27, has support of school district, RCMP and business community

The Vernon School District, Vernon-North Okanagan RCMP and business community are partnering up to support Pink Shirt Day, an anti-bullying cause, Wednesday, Feb. 27. (Vernon School District photo)

The Vernon School District, Vernon-North Okanagan RCMP and business community are partnering up to support Pink Shirt Day, an anti-bullying cause, Wednesday, Feb. 27. (Vernon School District photo)

The Vernon-North Okanagan RCMP, Vernon School District and many local community partners are working together to take a stand against bullying in support of National Pink Shirt Day.

On Wednesday, Feb. 27, RCMP, the school district and many local businesses will be standing together with students and the community to fight against the negative behaviour of bullying.

“It doesn’t matter if the bullying takes place in person, at work or school, online or in the community, it is still bullying and as a province and community we should not tolerate it,” said Maritza Reilly, communications coordinator for the Vernon School District.

Community supporter Rob Ellis, from Rellish Transport, was approached by the staff at Harwood Elementary last year, who wanted to provide every student and staff member with a pink shirt in an effort to speak up and stand together against bullying.

RELATED: Harwood school stands up to bullying

RELATED: Every day is Pink Shirt Day

Ellis and fellow community partners came together to make that happen for Harwood, providing the entire school with pink shirts designed by the students from Karyn Godard’s classroom. The program was so well received and resonated with so many students, Ellis and the community partners have since joined together again; however this year, they are providing shirts for six participating schools within the school district, totalling more than 2,700 T-shirts.

“It will be amazing to see over 2,000 people, including students, school district employees and local community businesses wearing the shirt designed by Harwood students specifically for Pink Shirt Day within our community,” said RCMP Supt. Shawna Baher. “The Vernon-North Okanagan RCMP is proud to be a part of such an important program and message. On Feb. 27, you will see RCMP officers within the community supporting anti-bullying day by wearing pink.”

“We don’t stand for bullying of any kind in School District 22,” said Supt Joe Rogers. “As a district, our teachers and staff work hard to provide a safe, healthy and respectful learning community for our students, so they are able to build a strong foundation for a bright future. We strive to make our schools safe and inclusive for everyone.

“The community response to this initiative has been greatly appreciated and together, we are making a tremendous stand against bullying.”

In addition to the pink shirts, participating classes have had the opportunity to design an anti-bullying day poster, where one poster from each school will be chosen as the winner and awarded a pizza party. The goal of the poster contest is to bring students together to talk about bullying and how they can stand together to address the issue.

The RCMP and school district also wants to remind parents to speak to their children about bullying to ensure they aren’t silent victims. For more information and tips to share with children, please visit:

RCMP Bullying and Cyberbullying

Crime Stoppers www.nokscrimestoppers.com

Youth in BC www.youthinbc.com

Erase Bullying www.erasebullying.ca

Kids Help Phone www.kidshelpphone.ca

Need Help Now www.needhelpnow.ca

Pink Shirt Day www.pinkshirtday.ca

Keep an eye out on social media the week of Feb. 27 to see all the great conversations being had around anti-bullying within the schools and community. #Pinkitforward



roger@vernonmorningstar.com

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