Today is Pink Shirt Day! Depending on where you live, you may or may not have heard about this extraordinary day. It all began in September 2007 in the small town of Cambridge, Nova Scotia. A Grade 9 student wore a pink polo shirt on his first day of school and became the target of threats and insults that were linked back to the colour he chose to wear. Part of the harassment included being called “gay” and being informed that he was going to be beat up.
Two Grade 12 students, David Shepherd and Travis Price, were outraged when they found out how this boy had been treated. But what could they do? Well, to start with they went to a local discount store and bought 50 pink shirts of various styles. Then, through mainly their online connections like email, they contacted numerous friends and told them their plan. When the students who had harassed the Grade 9 boy arrived at school the next day, they were faced with a “sea of pink“. Not only were there the 50 pink shirts being worn, but others had purposely outfitted themselves in pink as well. What could the bullies do now?
A clear statement had been made and these particular bullies have made very little noise since. News of what David and Travis had done spread across Canada and the rest of North America pretty quickly. It was such a powerful example of what can be done to stand up against bullying behaviour. This year, schools on other continents are holding their own Pink Shirt Day as well.
Stay tuned for more information about what we will be doing today to help spread the word that “bullying is never OK”. For more information, please visit the Pink Shirt Day site.
Did your school hold a Pink Shirt Day or something similar?
Do you have any other ideas about what we can do to promote awareness, understanding and openness about bullying?