Guam is the best place to raise children, according to Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero, because we are a community that is kind and compassionate about our values.
But that doesn’t mean that bullying does not occur and to show a united front against this, the governor has declared October as Bullying Prevention Month.
Do unto others as you would have them do unto you …. this biblical verse is the premise behind bullying prevention. According to pacer.org bullying statistics across the United States indicates that more than one out of every five students report being bullied and 33 percent of students who reported being bullied at school also indicated that they were bullied at least once or twice a month during the school year.
“We want not just as leaders but as parents to have an environment that is free from bullying. So we will do everything we can possibly do to make that happen for you. Because you are priceless to us, as leaders as parents, and we want to make sure you learn so you can grow in a kind environment,” the governor said.
The reasons for being bullied reported by students include physical appearance, race/ethnicity, gender, disability, religion, and sexual orientation, according to the National Center for Educational statistics. The data also showed that bullying negatively affects how students feel about themselves, their relationships with friends and family and on their school work and physical health.
The declaration of bullying prevention month recognizes that we each play a significant role in modeling how to treat others with kindness and respect and to help kids understand bullying and its consequences.
Studies show that school-based bullying prevention programs decrease bullying by up to 25 percent. Here on island, the Judiciary of Guam also plays a role in anti-bullying efforts by raising awareness through education and outreach.