Issues Forum to address bullying

Alabama Issues Forum on bullying will be Nov. 19 at the Jemison Municipal Complex from 5-7 p.m.

The forum is being facilitated by the David Mathews Center for Civic Life.

In the forum, citizens will have the opportunity to weigh carefully the attractions, weaknesses, costs and consequences of differing perspectives on productive ways to approach the issue of bullying.

The consequences of not solving the problem of bullying are enormous.

While Alabama continues to make progress related to combating bullying, the statistics and stories of bullied students are alarming. Nationwide, 28 percent of students in grades 6-12 experienced bullying during the 2008-2009 school year according to the 2008-2009 School Crime Supplement and the National Association of School Psychologists reports that 160,000 young people miss school every day due to fears of being bullied. The educational and public safety effects of ignoring this issue can be grave.

“There is no higher office than the office of citizen, and deliberative forums give citizens a chance to talk through what they hold valuable related to an issue,” Chris McCauley Executive Director of the David Mathews Center said in a release. “Bullying is an issue that can affect schools, communities, and office environments. It’s up to citizens to think through creative, community-based solutions to address the issue.”

The forum is being sponsored by the Alabama Cooperative Extension System, Auburn University.

To make reservations, call the Chilton County Extension Office at 280-6268

For more information, contact Sallie Hooker, (334) 201-7636 or Gay West at (205) 280-6268.

Alabama Issues Forums is a project of the David Mathews Center for Civic Life, in cooperation with New College at the University of Alabama.

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