B.C. Sport Organizations Stand Together to Erase Bullying in Sport

Vancouver, B.C. - In a province-wide call to action, provincial sport organizations are being asked to erase bullying in sport by making it a more inclusive and safe environment. viaSport and the Government of British Columbia are encouraging all provincial sport organizations to sign a Declaration of Commitment to erase bullying in sport throughout B.C. Those who sign the Declaration are committing to foster a positive sport environment with mechanisms in place to effectively prevent and address bullying in sport.
 
A sport environment in which participants, athletes, coaches, volunteers, spectators and officials are exposed to negative experiences, such as bullying, can be harmful and cause individuals to quit. viaSport and the Government of B.C. want to ensure participants at every level of sport are aware that bullying in any form cannot be tolerated.
 
“Sport is a powerful catalyst for personal growth and community pride; those participating in sport, at any level, should feel safe and encouraged,” says Sheila Bouman, viaSport CEO. “On behalf of the 73 provincial sport organizations viaSport funds, and the 670,000 B.C. members these organizations represent, we are determined to ensure a safe, welcoming and positive sport culture and environment for all British Columbians.”
 
A new #ERASEbullying video featuring Olympic gold medalist Jennifer Heil, Paralympic gold medalist, Richard Peter, Vancouver Whitecaps Carl Valentine, Vancouver Canucks President of Hockey Operations Trevor Linden, and Special Olympics athlete Paige Norton asks for the public to endorse this campaign by taking a pledge to erase bullying in sport.
 
“The more public support we can get for this, the greater impact we will have,” says Bouman. “Power in numbers can lead to real change. Everyone in this province can have a hand in building a thriving sport community – taking the public pledge on our website is one step in helping us get there. Together we can ensure no child or athlete is bullied while participating in sport.”
 
The Province of B.C. will acknowledge the sport sector and government leaders’ commitment to anti-bullying on Pink Shirt Day (February 22), as provincial sport organizations come together and join the Province’s first Declaration of Commitment to erase bullying in sport throughout B.C.
 
“Through the leadership of Premier Christy Clark, the Government of B.C. has made it clear that bullying has no place in our province. With provincial sport organizations signing the Declaration of Commitment to erase bullying in sport, they are taking a clear stance to stand with the province and viaSport,” said Peter Fassbender, Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development. “We will ensure that bullying will not be tolerated in our locker rooms, on our playing fields or in our bleachers and together we can spearhead the solution to build a safe platform where our athletes can truly shine.” 

Quick Facts
94% of B.C. sports organizations surveyed believe sport bullying is a serious problem that needs to be addressed.
55% of B.C. sports organizations surveyed say they know of athletes who have dropped out of sport because of bullying.
44% of B.C. sports organizations surveyed say they know of officials, coaches, managers, board members and other volunteers who left a sport due to bullying.

 Learn More

Watch the #ERASEbullying in Sport video featuring athletes Trevor Linden, Brent Hayden, Alexa Loo, Justina DiStasio, Evan Dunfee and many others on viasport.ca/erasebullying
Show your support by using #ERASEbullying on social media
Take the pledge to erase bullying on viasport.ca/erasebullying

Quotes:
Hon. Peter Fassbender, Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development: 
“Through the leadership of Premier Christy Clark, the Government of B.C. has made it clear that bullying has no place in our province. With provincial sport organizations signing the Declaration of Commitment to erase bullying in sport, they are taking a clear stance to stand with the province and viaSport. We will ensure that bullying will not be tolerated in our locker rooms, on our playing fields or in our bleachers and together we can spearhead the solution to build a safe platform where our athletes can truly shine.”

Sheila Bouman, CEO, viaSport:
“Sport is a powerful catalyst for personal growth and community pride; those participating in sport, at any level, should feel safe and encouraged. On behalf of the 73 provincial sport organizations viaSport funds, and the 670,000 members these organizations represent, we are determined to ensure a safe, welcoming and positive sport culture and environment for all British Columbians.”
  
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About viaSport British Columbia
viaSport British Columbia is a not-for-profit organization created by the Provincial Government in 2011 as a legacy of the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games. Our mandate is to increase awareness, opportunity and participation in sport across the province – at every stage of life and in every community. By leading the province’s sport sector in building a stronger, more effective system, we will bring more families to the field of play, more fans into the stands, more athletes to the podium, and more sports events to the province. Learn more at viasport.ca

Media contacts: 
viaSport
Michelle Tice, Communications and Engagement Director
Email: michellet@viasport.ca
Phone: 778.655.1774

Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development
Phone: 250.356.6334

 

BC Games Society Declaration of Commitment



 

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