Today, Education Minister Don Morgan joined the Minister responsible for SaskTel Kevin Doherty along with students, educators, school division personnel and community members in Saskatoon to launch the anonymous anti-bullying online reporting tool. The government will invest $250,000 in Saskatchewan’s online reporting tool, modelled after the ERASE tool in British Columbia, to enable children and youth to report bullying incidents online.
“The Government of Saskatchewan continues to work with its partners to support the safety of children and youth at school, in their communities and online,” Morgan said. “Today children and youth across the province will be able to take a stand and report incidents of bullying anonymously, through computers or mobile devices.”
The Ministry of Education has partnered with SaskTel’s “I Am Stronger” which provides a single location for students, families, and educators to access anti-bullying supports and resources.
“As a socially responsible organization, SaskTel is committed to ending bullying, not only in schools, but in online spaces and in other areas where children and youth connect,” Doherty said. “SaskTel understands that the products and services they sell, when utilized inappropriately, can perpetuate the act of bullying and in particular cyber bullying and this tool enables anonymous reporting to combat these acts.”
The development of this tool supports recommendations in Saskatchewan’s Action Plan to Address Bullying and Cyberbullying, a three year plan that will provide students, families and schools with the knowledge, skills, resources and supports to help Saskatchewan children and youth feel safe and accepted at school, in their community and online.
Once an anonymous report is made, alerts will be sent to those who can best resolve the situation. The anonymous online reporting tool will not be a replacement for emergency services. If the matter is urgent in nature or if it is a life-or-death situation, the person should contact 9-1-1 immediately.
The Government of Saskatchewan continues to support other programs as part of Saskatchewan’s Action Plan to Address Bullying and Cyberbullying, including:
•continuing to respond to students’ needs as identified through the annual Student First Anti-Bullying Forum, such as the development of a Student Code of Conduct for online behaviour; and
•Kids Help Phone – providing free, anonymous and confidential phone and online professional counselling for youth 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
To report a bullying incident or to find anti-bullying supports and resources, visit http://iamstronger.ca/.
To find out more about Saskatchewan’s Action Plan to Address Bullying and Cyberbullying, visit www.education.gov.sk.ca//Anti-Bullying/campeau-report.pdf.