If you are being bullied:
Remember it's not your fault and there are people who can help you. Don't blame yourself for what has happened.
- Be firm and clear - look them in the eye and tell them to stop.
- Get away from the situation as quickly as possible.
- Tell a member of staff straight away. If you are scared to tell a member of staff on your own, ask a friend to go with you.
- Tell a member of your family.
- Keep on speaking out until someone listens.
When you are talking about bullying with a member of staff, be clear about:
- What has happened to you
- How often it has happened
- Who was involved and who saw what was happening
- Where it happened
- What you have done about it already
If you talk to a member of staff, you can expect:
- To be listened to.
- To be taken seriously and not to have your concerns dismissed.
- Confidentiality to be respected wherever possible. (Discuss this first if this is important to you).
- Practical advice if you request it.
- Action to be taken (after discussion with you) in line with your school's Anti-Bullying policy.
- A range of responses to be available in your school which can take your situation into account.
- The situation to be monitored, in agreement with you.
Bullying and the Law
When it comes to the law around bullying it is complicated. Many incidents of bullying may not actually be classed as a crime, but in some cases where someone has been targeted because of prejudice (such as the way someone looks, their identity or their beliefs) then this might be classed as a 'hate incident' and you must tell the police.
Not all hate incidents amount to a crime but they can escalate if not reported.
Bullying incidents which are illegal involve:
- violence or assault
- harassment and intimidation over a period of time including calling someone names or threatening them, making abusive phone calls, and sending abusive emails or text messages (one incident is not normally enough to get a conviction)
- anything involving hate crimes (where someone has been targeted because of prejudice against the way they look, their beliefs or the way they live their lives for example)
If this has happened to you or anyone you know you must report on the South Yorkshire Police Hate Crime link.