Bullying can be verbal and physical abuse and/or online harassment. It is estimated that 160,000 children miss school every day due to fear of attack or intimidation by other students. The laws though, on bullying are lacking.
Reexamination of the laws, as they stand now, is probably a good place to start, as the behavior of bullying is not a crime. While there are penalties for cyber bullying and police have the power to enforce it, other types of bullying are undefined and therefore there are no standing penalties.
‘Bullying is a willful act which is written, verbal or physical or a course of conduct which is not aurthorized by law and which is repeated and causes harm or emotional distress, exploits an imbalance of power, poses a threat or fear of harm and crates and environment interfering with education,’ is the definition lawmakers put in the books.
“It’s only a definition so it’s like a starting point,” said Sgt. Mitch Maciszak, Clark County School District Police.
At least 1,700 students were expelled or suspended for bullying or intimidation over the last school year in Clark County, says Sgt. Maciszak.
An enhancement may be the solution for bullying that occurs without the use of a cell phone or computer. For instance, if an assault occurs due to bullying, by law, bullying would be a greater offense.
There needs to a review on the laws that are on the books. Children deserve to feel safe while in school. Visit 60 For Safety to learn more about bullying and what you can do.
Steve is the Managing Shareholder of Steven J. Klearman & Associates, a civil litigation law firm located in Reno, Nevada. He practices primarily in the areas of civil litigation and injury law, and has authored one of the definitive guides to Nevada civil law that is widely used by Nevada judges and attorneys, his book entitled Elements of Nevada Legal Theories.