Bullies need help and therapy, too, say UAE experts

Nandini Sircar/Dubai
Filed on November 19, 2020
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Treatment plans should be created to help bullies transform their aggression into a friendlier attitude.

No child is born a bully — and so when kids manifest bullying behaviour, they need all the help they can get as much as victims do, experts said at a virtual discussion today.

Sustainable behavioural treatment plans should be created to help bullies transform their aggression into a friendlier attitude towards their peers, said the speakers during the online session held ahead of World Children’s Day tomorrow, November 20. Among those present at the event were Unicef representatives, several educational institutions in the UAE, and members of the community.

Maitha Al Shamsi, CEO for the Human Rights Sector of Dubai’s Community Development Authority, said: “Treating the bullying behaviour requires awareness and deep knowledge of the root causes and their impacts on the child’s personality, as no child is born a bully.”

The experts also recommended the adoption of best practices to identify the common types and causes of bullying. They discussed various aspects of the behaviour, including how to determine whether a child is vulnerable to bullying; looking out for signs that indicate a kid is being bullied; the reasons behind bullying behaviour; and its impact on children and their surrounding environments.

Explaining why all steps must be taken to prevent bullying and support kids, Al Shamsi said: “Being bullied is one of the most serious and highly alarming topics concerning our children today. All of our children are exposed to it — in one way or another through some form of teasing or harassment from peers.

“Some children may not be seriously affected by it but there are cases where the impact on the victim is very serious that it has affected their personality, leaving them with an impact that will affect their lives.”

The talk was also held within the UAE’s week-long anti-bullying campaign, which is set to conclude on Saturday.

Eltayeb Adam, Unicef representative in the Gulf Area, said: “We are glad to see the Bullying Prevention Week being observed in the UAE every year. Unicef continues to work with all stakeholders to promote a safe learning environment for every child and ensure children’s welfare, rights and protection, which is a vision we share with the UAE’s wise leadership.”

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