Today is Odd Socks Day and also the beginning of Anti-Bullying Week. It is a chance for everyone to make a stand against bullying, both in schools and in the workplace.
Join Transform colleagues in wearing odd socks to work today. This initiative, started by the Anti-Bullying Alliance, is a way for us to celebrate what makes us all unique. All you need to do is wear mismatched socks and let your personality shine through – you can send us a photo of them on Twitter or Facebook as we’d love to see your funky socks! Our handles are @transformhs on Twitter and @Transform Housing & Support on Facebook.
We are also taking this opportunity to reiterate that bullying has no place at Transform, whether among colleagues, or the clients we support. Dealing with it when it does happen can be challenging, but there are resources you can access and people you can speak to. Please see some organisations and support available below.
Transform’s Director of People Simone Bartley said that it was better to address bullying issues early on. “Please don’t suffer in silence,” she said. “The earlier you tell someone, the better the outcome.”
How do you define bullying?
Bullying can be a person, or a group, seeking to harm another through offensive, intimidating, or insulting behaviour. This can take place physically or through technology and can affect people of all ages.
What does bullying in the workplace look like?
It can take many forms, including but not limited to:
- Spreading malicious rumours or insulting someone by word or behaviour (particularly on racial, sexual or disability grounds).
- Excluding someone from conversations and activities.
- Undermining a colleague by constantly criticising them.
- Ridiculing someone by picking on them.
You can find more information and advice about bullying, and the different forms it can take, on Bullying UK’s website.
I am really struggling with being bullied. Who can I talk to?
In the first instance, it’s useful to speak with someone you can trust. This could be a parent or a friend, a teacher, a GP or a line manager. If you need additional support or would like to speak about your issues in strict confidence, there are organisations who can help:
- The Samaritans have a free helpline available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Call 116 123 if you need someone to talk to, or get in touch through other means here.
- The LGBT foundation offer support and advice for LGBTQ+ people. Call 0345 3 30 30 30 or email [email protected]. For more information, visit their helpline page.
- Childline provide support for people under 19. Call them for free on 0800 1111 to speak with a counsellor. You can find opening times and additional information, including an online message board for young people, here.
- Mencap have a helpline for people with learning disabilities, and their families and carers. Simply call 0808 8008 1111 from 10am to 3pm, Monday and Friday.