Bullying can happen to anyone.
Up to one in four young people have experienced bullying at some point, with one in five experiencing it online.
What is bullying?
Bullying is an ongoing misuse of power in relationships through repeated verbal, physical or social behaviour that causes physical or psychological harm.
It can involve an individual or a group misusing their power over one or more persons. Bullying can happen in person or online, and it can be obvious (overt) or hidden (covert).
Bullying of any form or for any reason can have long-term effects on those involved, including bystanders.
Single incidents and conflict or fights between equals, whether in person or online, are not defined as bullying.
Bullying has three main features:
- It involves a misuse of power in a relationship
- It is ongoing and repeated
- It involves behaviours that can cause harm.
Read more on the national definition of bullying for Australian schools.
Bullying doesn’t just happen in the playground. It can happen in person or online, at any time of day or night.
It can be distressing to learn that your child is being bullied. Children and young people need to know that they are being heard, that their feelings matter and that their issue will be investigated respectfully. Bullying should be taken seriously.
For the community
Everyone has a role in creating safe and supportive places for children and young people.
The Taskforce is currently looking for your thoughts and solutions on how to tackle cyberbullying. If you have ideas on how to prevent or respond to this serious issue you can write or upload them as a submission, or send them by email.
Alternatively, find out more about other things you can do as a community member to help address bullying.
Providing students with opportunities to talk about bullying is an important part of making a positive change.
National Day of Action against Bullying and ViolenceFriday 16 March 2018
Australia’s biggest anti‑bullying event for schools
Queensland Youth Engagement Hub
An online space where kids can have their say on what is on their mind – including bullying issues.