A World Without Bullying

Kellie Sones

Like many people, Keith Slaughter experienced bullying firsthand as a child. Now, decades later, he's doing something about it.

Slaughter, a leader of the No Bullying Collaborative, was bullied by an older student as a child.
Keith Slaughter headshot
Keith Slaughter
"I never knew when he was going to come after me," he said. "I was terrified."

Bullying is defined by Stopbullying.gov as "repeated, unwanted aggression between individuals in which there is a power difference, or one person is perceived as weaker than the other."

According to this definition of bullying, many people have been bullied at some point in life.

The ongoing emotional and verbal abuse took a toll on Slaughter as a young boy, but he overcame it.

"In that situation, I think I empowered myself to deal with it," Slaughter said.

The No Bullying Collaborative is a group of parents, professionals, and school administrators dedicated to end bullying in Butte County.

Since its start in 2012, the No Bullying Collaborative has partnered with schools and students in Chico, Oroville, and Paradise to open the conversation about bullying.

"Bullying is an ongoing issue," said Scott Lindstrom, an administrator with Chico Unified School District (CSUD) and a leader of the No Bullying Collaborative.

Lindstrom wants to create an open conversation and "empower the community to then say, 'Let's do something about it. Let's create a community where [bullying] doesn't exist.' "

Chico Unified School District has also been involved in the fight to end bullying. Chico's elementary schools have adopted a campaign called "Be a HERO," highlighting four main concepts that are necessary to successfully end bullying: Honesty and Helpfulness, Empathy, Respect, and Only Takes One.

Anyone can be a HERO by volunteering to help at a CUSD school, stopping gossip, modeling positive behavior, and reporting abuse. This campaign is intended to motivate and empower students to end the bystander effect and actively take a stand against bullying.

The No Bullying Collaborative's hope is that this bystander empowerment effect grows to reach not only students but the rest of the community as well.

"My take on it is that you don't bully your friends," Lindstrom said. "The more we can build relationships across subcultures of our community, the better shot we have of having the healthy community we want as opposed to a community where bullying and harassment are the norm."

Aiming to build a culture of respect, the collaborative's first goal is to educate the community on what bullying is and how to spot it so that everyone can play a role in ending it.

To get involved with the No Bullying Collaborative, visit no-bullying.org or contact
Tray Robinson at Chico State at trobinson@csuchico.edu or 530-898-4764.

bulling infographic
Source: Stopbullying.gov