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Bullying under spotlight on Pink Shirt Day


On Friday May 22, schools, workplaces and communities around New Zealand will wear pink and celebrate Pink Shirt Day as a sign of their commitment to preventing bullying and embracing diversity.

Celebrations are being planned nationwide, from school-wide mufti days to parties in town centres.

Recent studies have shown that nearly half (47%) of young New Zealanders will experience bullying at some point in their lives, and 94% of school staff have seen bullying in their schools.

People who have been bullied are more likely to experience anxiety, depression and low self-esteem, and often their academic performance decreases.

“No one deserves to be bullied,” Mental Health Foundation chief executive Judi Clements says. “Thousands of young people do reach out and ask for help when they’re being bullied, but there are many others who stay quiet because they’re embarrassed, ashamed or fearful and even think it’s their fault.

“With Pink Shirt Day, New Zealanders have the opportunity to tell people who are being targeted by bullies that they are not invisible – they are important and valued, and we will all work together to find solutions to the problems they are experiencing.”

The message of Pink Shirt Day is: Speak up. Stand together. Stop bullying.

Pink Shirt Day posters are available for download from pinkshirtday.org.nz/swag/. Schools and organisations can also order t-shirts, wristbands, pens and stickers to make their PSD celebrations their pinkest ever.

While Pink Shirt Day is only once a year, the website is available year-round for all those affected by bullying – targets, parents, and schools – to access information, advice, and resources. n Visit Pink Shirt Day: pinkshirtday.org.nz, facebook.com/PinkShirtDayAotearoa
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