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Disability and bullying Vikki Butler Senior research and policy officer

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1 Disability and bullying Vikki Butler Senior research and policy officer

2 Workshop format Outline of anti bullying poll undertaken by Barnardo’s Cymru 2013 to establish some of the issues raised by children and young people about disability and bullying Information from Learning Disability Wales about the Real Opportunities Project and support given to tackle bullying outline of work being undertaken by Barnardo’s Cymru in Blaenau Gwent to support disabled young people in transition to adulthood in inclusive settings Activities used by both organisations to support disabled young people when faced with bullying and train disability equality to non disabled peers.

3 So what are the bullying issues faced by disabled young people? Findings from Barnardo’s Cymru anti bullying poll 2013

4 Who participated in the poll? 644 children and young people from all parts of Wales 1/5 completed in welsh language 74% of responses ages 11- 16 Full age range 6- 23

5 What did we ask about? the bullying they witness at school and in their communities disability related bullying, homophobic bullying and racist bullying that they witness how well they think schools are tackling bullying what else they think the government should be doing

6 Findings 1: Children witness high levels of identity related bullying 58% of respondents reported witnessing bullying due to disability 58% reported witnessing homophobic or transphobic bullying 51% reported witnessing racist bullying Bullying was described to occur in school and community settings

7 Key message to government 84% of respondents felt the Welsh Government should be doing more because: It’s government’s job to lead and make sure the same things happen across Wales Bullying has an impact on children and young people’s mental health which should be of concern Bullying impacts upon school work and exams

8 Schools variable implementation of anti bullying work Schools don’t implement their anti bullying policies: Bullying is ignored and children/ young people are not listened to Teachers aren’t so approachable and there’s no outreach to pupils Sanctions aren’t often implemented so nothing changes or stops

9 Lack of consistent approaches in schools A lack of strategy, systems, enforcement, initiatives and consistency around anti bullying policies Teachers don’t know how to deal with bullying, particularly in relation to name calling Lack of whole school approach so diversity education is poor

10 Need to improve equalities education in schools there needs to be clear sanctions and support for perpetrators of bullying, particularly against identities link anti bullying to education about tolerance and equality

11 Key messages about bullying in the community Need better diversity support in mainstream youth settings Bullying should be included in community safety agendas Need to educate adults and services to recognise bullying Tackle cyber bullying

12 Blaenau Gwent community links project confidence raising with disabled young people so they feel able to join mainstream activities Equality training/ awareness with non disabled young people so they understand the issues of bullying and discrimination Community connecting- supporting individual young people to join mainstream activities, volunteering and employment experience.

13 What is bullying? ‘bullying is a series of intentional incidents over time where the victim feels powerless to be able to defend themselves and experiences hurt or harm.’

14 Preventative work Equality education enables: Discussion of disability Awareness of hurtful language and actions Peer support rather than volunteer/ adult supplied support Better social inclusion Raising confidence enables: Challenge to hurtful language knowledge of differences between conflict and bullying and how to deal with them Ability to tell someone More social networks contributing to safety and social skills

15 Responsive work Individual support from staff Group support from peers Schools liaison where needed Parents liaison where needed Empowerment aims for the individual young person

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