Pink Day founder says he hopes Nova Scotians take lead on changing bully culture

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By Haley Ryan - Metro Halifax

DARTMOUTH - Travis Price says he hopes a new website and anti-bullying programs through the Red Cross can change our society, so people like Rehtaeh Parsons never feel alone again.

Travis Price stands in front of a projection of a new website he developed with the Canadian Red Cross for Pink Day— an anti-bullying campaign— Tuesday morning at the Atlantic Canadian Red Cross headquarters in Burnside.

Price, founder of the Pink Shirt Day movement, launched with the Canadian Red Cross focusing on raising money for bullying prevention like the RespectED program, and providing resources for kids and parents.

“With recent events that have happened in this province it’s our job as Nova Scotians to do this,” Price said during the launch at the Atlantic Red Cross headquarters in Burnside on Tuesday.

“We all failed. So it’s important that we work and we build to make things better, so we don’t have that happen again,” Price said in reference to Rehtaeh, a Cole Harbour teen who took her own life after years of bullying.

The website also has pink T-shirts and hats for sale with a logo created by British Columbia students showing a robot saying “Even I have feelings,” and the words “Everyday is pink day” on the back.

Paul Kells, founder of Up-standers and Pink Day promoter, said 10 per cent of T-shirt funds goes to Red Cross programs and 20 per cent to community teams, schools or work-safety courses.

“I’m convinced it’s going to have the same impact as seat belt campaigns, smoking campaigns … led by kids but supported by adults,” Kells said about the anti-bullying movement.

Part of the site will showcase stories from kids as well as adults in the workplace, about the times a friend has stood up against a bully for them or offered support.

“If we can create a new, positive social norm and kids get that most people are not bullying, and most people will step forward, then we’ve really accomplished something,” Kells said.

Organizations: Red Cross

Geographic location: Burnside, British Columbia

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