Published October 22, 2012 | 9:05 pm
Hundreds of people in more than 40 cities around the world are expected to light candles tonight to remember bullying victim Amanda Todd and to take a quiet stand against the kind of torment that led her to take her own life.
The Coquitlam teenager took her own life inside her home on Oct. 10 after years of being bullied and stalked online. She posted a video on YouTube just weeks before committing suicide to go public with her personal story.
A Facebook page has been set up listing memorials for the 15-year-old Port Coquitlam, B.C., girl from cities in the Vancouver area
to cities in Alberta, Ontario, Manitoba, Quebec and Nova Scotia. The Toronto District School Board, Canada’s largest with 250,000 students and 40,000 employees, said it would pause for a minute of silence to spread Amanda’s message against bullying.
The biggest vigil is expected to be in Holland Park in Surrey B.C., near Vancouver. Navi Gill, cofounder of Global Girl Power, a Vancouver-based group advocating for young females, which organized the Surrey vigil, said “We wanted to create a movement
to show we are taking a stand against bullying,” she said.
“It may be hundreds of people or just a few. We’re encouraging people to get together to show that bullying crosses all cultures,
communities and a lot of people have been touched by this.”
But apart from these vigils, the number of hurtful and offensive posts that have circulated about Amanda’s suicide only underlines
the point that more action is needed.
Programs are already in place, including Roots of Empathy, SNAP (Stop Now and Plan) by the Canadian Safe School Network but
still much needs to be done to apply these programs in true letter and spirit.
The authorities are also swinging into action against bullying. Eight girls in London, Ontario were charged on Thursday for alleged
bullying and one teen boy was charged in Toronto for the heinous crime. But still Amanda Todd’s heart-wrenching case tells
us that we all need to do our part and take responsibility for this growing problem.
Amanda will, and has become, a symbol of what’s wrong and provided the impetus for a charge to change.
© 2013 - Saanj Inc.