Letter to the Editor - March 19:Laws failing bullied children

THE effects of bullying can be traumatic and even fatal with many cases leading to mental health problems, substance abuse and suicide.

Australian schools and parents persist with the fight against bullying in an attempt to protect their children, while most states continue to have outdated and inadequate bullying laws. Bullying affects at least 26% of all Australian pupils, with a staggering 9% being bullied weekly.

Most laws that are in effect are from decades ago and offer no real protection or recourse for the victims of bullying. With no solid examples of punishment being set, these problems will continue.

Suicide is the top cause of death for 15-24 year olds in Australia and alarmingly, self-harming deaths go up 657% when comparing those between 12-13 and 14-15 years old.

The National Day of Action against Bullying and Violence sees schools across Australia taking a stand against the bully.

To coincide with this, Angels Hope is calling for Australians in each state to sign the petition to strengthen the education and criminal law acts and to send a stronger message to bullies through punishable action and help eradicate the behaviour from our schools.

Rueben Cunningham,
Co-founder Angels Hope

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