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Announcement: National Bullying Prevention Awareness Month — October 1–31, 2015

Bullying is "any unwanted aggressive behavior(s) by another youth or group of youths who are not siblings or current dating partners that involves an observed or perceived power imbalance and is repeated multiple times or is highly likely to be repeated" (1). As a form of youth violence, bullying can include aggression that is physical (e.g., hitting, tripping), verbal (e.g., name calling, teasing), or relational/social (e.g., rumor spreading, leaving out of a group). Electronic aggression or cyberbullying is bullying that occurs through Internet or mobile telephone technology (e.g., e-mail, chat room, instant messaging, website, text messaging, videos, or pictures) (2).

Bullying is widespread in the United States. In 2013, 20% of U.S. high school students reported being bullied on school property and 15% reported that they were bullied electronically within the past 12 months (3). Youths who are bullied are at increased risk for depression, anxiety, sleep difficulties, and poor school adjustment (4). Youths who bully others are at increased risk for substance use, academic problems, and violence later in life (4).

October is National Bullying Prevention Awareness Month. During this month, multisectoral partners collaborate to raise awareness about bullying prevention and identify ways to stop bullying year-round through events, activities, outreach, and education. The ultimate goal is to stop bullying before it starts. Certain promising school-based bullying prevention programs include the following elements: 1) improving supervision of students, 2) using school rules and behavior management techniques to detect and address bullying, 3) implementing and consistently enforcing schoolwide anti-bullying policies, and 4) promoting cooperation among different professionals and between school staff and parents (5).

Additional information is available at and


  1. Gladden RM, Vivolo-Kantor AM, Hamburger ME, Lumpkin CD. Bullying surveillance among youths: uniform definitions for public health and recommended data elements, Version 1.0. Atlanta, GA: National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, CDC and US Department of Education; 2013. Available at
  2. David-Ferdon C, Hertz MF. Electronic media and youth violence: a CDC issue brief for researchers. Atlanta, GA: US Department of Health and Human Services, CDC; 2009. Available at
  3. Kann L, Kinchen S, Shanklin SL, et al. Youth risk behavior surveillance—United States, 2013. MMWR Surveill Summ 2014;63(No. SS-4).
  4. Farrington D, Baldry A. Individual risk factors for school bullying. J Aggress Conflict Peace Res 2010;2:4–16.
  5. Farrington DP, Ttofi MM. School-based programs to reduce bullying and victimization. Systematic review for the Campbell Collaboration Crime and Justice Group; 2010. Available at

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