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‘Commitment to kindness’: Newmarket, York Region say no to bullying on Pink Shirt Day

February 29, 2024

Posted on: February 28th, 2024. By: Joseph Quigley,, Original Article.

 ‘Join us in wearing pink today and spreading love and positivity every day,’ says Blue Door, one of many organizations, schools, politicians sending out messages against bullying today.

Newmarket leaders and community members are standing up against bullying through participation in today’s Pink Shirt Day.

Organizations across York Region and Newmarket are calling on people to stand up to bullying for the annual national Feb. 28 event. From schools to politicians to service groups, people are sending a message that bullying should have no place in the community.

“Let’s look beyond our differences and celebrate the things that make each of us unique,” York Region District School Board said on social media.

Pink Shirt Day is a nationally recognized cause to address bullying in schools. It dates back to 2007 when students in Nova Scotia wore pink shirts to stand up for a student getting bullied for wearing a pink shirt. Since then, schools across the country have taken part. 

“Let’s stand united by wearing pink to symbolize our commitment to kindness and creating a supportive environment,” York Catholic District School Board said. “Together, we can make a difference and foster a world where everyone feels valued and respected.”

“We wear pink to stand up against bullying and represent our school’s values of compassion, community, and respect,” Newmarket’s Pickering College said.

Politicians are also widely participating. York Region chairman and CEO Wayne Emmerson said that our communities must be safe spaces for everyone, a responsibility shared by each of us.

“We each have a role to play in helping one another and advocating for those who need support,” he said. “We must continue to “lift each other up” and encourage empathy, compassion and kindness. On Pink Shirt Day, and all year, long, let’s stand up against injustice.”

Newmarket band Glenn Marais and the Mojo Train is part of a live stream with Kindness Canada being broadcast at schools.

“Kindness can help us stop bullying,” Marais said in a promotional video. “Help us change the world through kindness.”

Newmarket and York Region organizations like Southlake Regional Health Centre have also made statements on Pink Shirt Day.

“At Southlake we are committed to providing leading-edge care for our community while honouring everyone’s right to work and learn in an environment free of bullying, incivility, harassment, and discrimination of any kind,” the hospital said.

“The Blue Door team is wearing pink to stand up against bullying and support kindness, acceptance and inclusion for all,” housing charity Blue Door said. “Join us in wearing pink today and spreading love and positivity every day.”