Princes Town MP Barry Padarath in a press release said that he was happy to hear that the Minister of Education agreed that policies are needed to be established in schools to deal with the harmful effects of bullying.
MP Padarath called on the Minister of Education to stop being reactionary and to put proper protocols and guidelines in place to deal with the escalating problem of bullying in schools. The MP stated that he believed that the Ministry needed to establish a taskforce with specific mandates on this issue and timelines to inform the setting up of proper actionable policies.
In the past under the People’s Partnership administration a taskforce was established to deal with children’s rights and informed the work of the Children’s Authority. MP Padarath believes that a similar approach was needed in this case. He called on the Ministry to join the International Bullying Prevention Association which can be used as a reference on how other countries have dealt with formulating policies on the issue of bullying prevention as well as the rehabilitation of children who exhibit deviant behaviour in the school system and support services for victims and their families.
MP Padarath who works alongside the Princes Town Youth Council is in the process of joining the Council with the International Bullying Prevention Association and will attend and participate in their convention later on this year in Nashville. MP Padarath said that he was happy to use his voice to advance an issue like this not only in Trinidad and Tobago but Internationally.
The MP noted that bullying has long term effects and can even result in suicide and serious crimes. He once again indicated that he believes dealing with deviant behaviour in schools is a long term measure in dealing with serious crime.
MP Padarath stated that any policy formulated to deal with the issue of bullying in schools needed to be strengthened and bolstered by new legislation to reflect current societal demands and not simply by reviewing existing antiquated laws. The Princes Town MP who once called for a Parental Responsibility Act states that this issue needed to be looked at holistically in terms of prevention, rehabilitation and legislation.