Bullying is an undisciplined social behavior that involves aggressively misusing power to cause physical, emotional, or mental damage. Bullying has three types; Physical, Verbal, and Online (Cyberbullying).
All three types can equally devastate anyone’s physical or emotional well-being. Simply put, bullying is a repeated misuse of power to harm another person intentionally.
Bullying in Australia
Australia is under a bullying crisis. In the past five years, bullying has skyrocketed, especially in the educational sector. Bullying can happen anywhere, from school to work to any social space.
However, young Aussie kids are the ones taking the main hit from the social disease of bullying. Repeated abusive behavior over someone can harm their well-being permanently. That’s why such an issue must be addressed and taken care of.
Australian schools and facilities observe the National Day of Action Against Bullying and Violence (NDA) on the third Friday of March every year. The following figure shows the average frequency of bullying of year 4 students as compared to year 8 students.
Australian Statistics on Bullying
Bullying in Australia is a serious problem as it can devastate a person’s mental and physical well-being. Bullying is the leading cause of suicidal thoughts, and maybe that’s why Australia has one of the highest teen suicide rates.
Suicide Prevention Australia states that over three thousand Australians committed suicide this year. That number is startling, with increasing cases of cruelty, intimidation, violence among youths, and cyberbullying.
According to a survey by the Anti-Bully Crusaders, four out of five students believe bullying and abuse is a significant problem in Australian schools. Also, the same survey suggested that over 60% of students have experienced bullying at least once in their school journey.
Bullying Statistics in Australia 2022
Bullying in Australia has been increasing in numbers over the past few years. Especially after the lockdown period, students have shown more aggressive behaviors on average than before.
With increased screen time due to the lockdown, cyberbullying numbers have skyrocketed. According to Statista, around 58% of Australian teenagers believe that social media exposes them to cyberbullying risks.
Here are several facts and statistics on Australian bullying culture for you to read.
- 90% of 4-8th class students have been bullied at least once in their lifetime.
- 70.6% of students in school have seen bullying of some kind.
- Over 5% of students in Australia drop out of school due to repeated bullying and abusive behaviors.
- 1 in 5 children gets Cyberbullied on streaming and social media platforms.
- Nearly 72% of schools reported managing at least one online bullying incident in the previous year.
- Bullying contributes to around 65% of mental health problems in teenagers.
For a better perspective, here is a graph showing the proportion of children aged 11–15 by mental health status and level of distress caused by bullying.
Addressing the Surge of Bullying in Australia
In recent years, Australia has witnessed a concerning upsurge in bullying incidents, both in physical and digital realms. This worrying trend has captured the attention of many, and it’s becoming increasingly evident that intervention is crucial.
Fortunately, a coalition of both private and government organizations has come forward, ardently taking up the cause to curb this menace. These entities have been working diligently to raise awareness and promote a culture of understanding and empathy. Their initiatives include the following:
- Bullying Awareness Camps: These camps aim to educate attendees on the effects of bullying, the signs that someone might be a victim, and ways to intervene safely. Through interactive activities and firsthand testimonies, participants are given a clearer picture of the profound impact bullying can have on an individual’s mental and emotional well-being.
- Counseling Lectures: Professional counselors and psychologists are being engaged to hold lectures and workshops, addressing both victims and potential bullies. Victims learn coping mechanisms, while potential bullies are educated on the long-term repercussions of their actions, not only on their victims but on their own futures as well.
- Holistic Solutions: Beyond just awareness and counseling, organizations are delving deeper into root causes. They are promoting inclusive educational practices, fostering peer support systems, and encouraging community-wide dialogues to address the underlying issues that contribute to bullying behaviors.
Regardless of our roles in society – be it as a student, parent, educator, or child – we each bear a significant responsibility in this ongoing battle. Bullying, in any form, undermines the core values that Australians hold dear: respect, tolerance, and mutual understanding. Therefore, it is not just a task for these organizations alone but our collective moral duty to stand firm against bullying in Australia. Through unity and concerted efforts, we can pave the way for safer, more compassionate communities for all.