Parks board working on anti-bullying project - 14 News, WFIE, Evansville, Henderson, Owensboro

Parks board working on anti-bullying project

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On Wednesday, a local consulting firm presented their ideas and the cost of the Evansville Parks Board's Anti-Bullying project.

There's been no decision yet, but if the parks board goes through with this, the pilot project would be at Swonder Ice Arena.

High school hockey's going on right now and a lot of kids are in and out of this facility every day. One local family told 14 News that they'd be happy to see a bullying policy go through.

Bullying is something every school-age kid has heard about.

"I told on this one person who was bullying another person and then they come and focus on me," 7th grader, Paige Johnson says.

Paige says it's hard to sit back and watch it happen.

"It makes us feel like we want to stop it and take control," Paige says.

"The bullying is actually getting out of hand with the schools and public places, and I would like for my child to be safe whenever they go to a facility like this," Paige's mom, Tonya Johnson tells 14 News.

Tonya was happy to hear that Evansville's Parks Board is now working on an anti-bullying project, just because they do deal with so many kids.

"We've had some incidents at several facilities. It's something that I've think we've seen a demand for," says Parks Board President Jay Ritter says.

Now they're in talks with inspire associates. A local company that says they could develop and implement a bullying policy for all parks board facilities, starting with a pilot program at Swonder.

"I think this is the first step for a pilot program, not just for the parks, but probably for the city," Ritter tells 14 News.

But it comes with a hefty price tag, $12,500.

"They're wanting to make cutbacks on everything else. Where is the money going to come from for this?" Tonya asks.

Ritter says you have to think about how many kids the policy could benefit.

"So I think putting those things in place helps the overall program and the overall operation of all our facilities," Ritter says.

No decisions were made on Wednesday. The parks board will pick up this topic again at their next meeting in a couple weeks.

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