Friday morning, Erie County Legislator Ed Rath joined school representatives, members of law enforcement and other elected officials at a press conference to launch the WNY Anti-Bully Project with SPAR self-defense in the Town of Tonawanda.
Founded by director Bill Long, the WNY Anti-Bully Project is a community-based organization focused on bringing the community together in a united and functional way to promote awareness and education in the advancement of anti-bullying endeavors. The project will provide school enrichment programs for kids, offer scholarships for kids who are unable to take self-defense classes at the self-defense school of their choice, and will work with lawmakers to promote meaningful and effective legislation to help reduce bullying in the community.
Legislator Rath, who co-authored the Erie County Cyber-bullying law in 2012, spoke at the press conference and presented organizers with a proclamation in observance of “National Bullying Prevention Month.”
“Unfortunately, bullying exists in every community and has devastating consequences,” said Legislator Rath. “We must continue working with schools, law enforcement and community members to lead the way in bullying prevention. I am honored to be part of launching this important initiative and would like to thank Bill Long for making the WNY Anti-Bully Project a reality.”
“There are many wonderful organizations that work tirelessly to stop bullying in our schools and in our community,” said Bill Long. “The WNY Anti Bully Project aims to bring these groups together to develop, share and distribute each other’s resources. With the combined efforts of our elected officials, school officials and community service organizations we will create an effective distribution channel in an ongoing effort to make useful information available to teachers and parents to help identify and effectively deal with the issue of bullying. This combined effort will translate into our children learning to be more respectful among their peers and safely stand up to bulling. In addition, a scholarship fund is being prepared to provide self-defense classes to children that might not be able to afford them at the self-defense school of their choice.”
“Every child has the right to be protected from bullying so they can purse the full and productive life of their dreams,” said State Senator Chris Jacobs. “I am pleased to support the launch of the WNY Anti-Bully Project, and look forward to building stronger, healthier communities by reducing the amount of bullying in our society.”
Saturday, the project will hold a ribbon cutting and launch party at SPAR. There will be free anti-bullying classes, police K9 demonstrations, self-defense classes and other events. All are welcome to attend. For assistance or further information, contact the Anti-Bully Project at email@example.com.