DAPHNE, Ala. (WPMI) Thursday, the Baldwin County District Attorney unveiled a plan to put a stop to bullying giving students a chance to have their voices heard. In an effort to change the culture of acceptance of bullying, the District Attorney's Office is joining forces with the Baldwin County Public School System and community partners in a comprehensive anti-bullying initiative.
"I personally helped someone who had attempted suicide and was planning to attempt suicide again," said Robert Swindle, who is one of a dozen volunteer Peer Counselors at Daphne high school.
"If we hear something you know that could potentially be dangerous, we can red flag it to someone or we can stay in tune personally with it," said Jamin Pope, another Peer Counselor at the high school.
It's their job to be the eyes and ears, sometimes a voice for students who might be afraid of speaking up if bullied. D.A. Hallie Dixon, along with school officials, came to DHS to highlight the Peer Counselor program and make additions with the latest anti-bullying campaign.
"There is a connection of course to many school shootings and school incidents. In that way is it connected of course," said Dixon. According to the Secret Service, three out of four school shootings nationwide have been traced back to bullying.
Announced Thursday, among several initiatives is an anonymous online tip website for students called "Talk About It." Local Real Estate Developer Allen Cox is stepping up, sponsoring and paying for Country Artist Matt Kennon and other inspirational speakers to tour the schools as part of anti-bullying effort.
"The uniqueness of working with the district prosecutors office in this mode. I've never had a county district prosecutor take this step," said School Superintendent Dr. Alan Lee.
The campaign includes a student video competition. Winners will be treated to a free concert at their school by Country Star Matt Kennon. A public anti-bullying rally and concert is scheduled for March 14.