Mr. Speaker, bullying is a serious problem in our schools and workplaces, as well as at home and online.
As a teacher, I have seen the effects of bullying first-hand. While one might think that for most kids recess and lunch are their favourite times of the day, kids who are bullied dread time outside of the classroom because they are afraid of not having anyone to speak to, of looking like they have no friends, of being bullied.
Kids who are bullied experience depression and anxiety, difficulty sleeping, increased feelings of loneliness and sadness, and diminished school performance.
Bullying causes kids to stop going to class and may even cause them to drop out.
February 27 is known as Pink Shirt Day, an opportunity to raise awareness about bullying, discrimination, homophobia and transphobia. As the Pink Shirt Day movement grows each year, join me in taking a stand against bullying. People should wear their pink shirts proudly and let everyone know they do not tolerate bullying or discrimination.
We need to show kindness, empathy and compassion. Most importantly, we need to speak out against bullying all year round.