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Bullying issue to be addressed at Bullskin meeting

| Tuesday, April 23, 2013, 12:01 a.m.

Bullskin Township Neighborhood Watch will be tackling the issue of bullying at its Tuesday meeting, scheduled for 7 p.m. in Pennsville Baptist Church Education Center.

Organizer Edwin Zylka said the principals from Connellsville Area and Southmoreland high schools and Mt. Carmel Christian School will be on hand to answer such questions as:

• What constitutes bullying?

• Is bullying a natural human characteristic that needs to be corrected?

• Why do children / people bully?

• Is school bullying more prevalent in recent generations?

Fayette County Probation Officer Heath Randolph will also be a part of the meeting.

Zylka said he chose the bullying topic because he has seen a lot of bullying on the news lately.

“We need to understand how people relate to one another and what we can do to help control the situation,” he said. “We need to figure out how people get the attitude that they can treat other people in a negative way.

“Maybe there's something missing in the way children are brought up these days,” Zylka continued. “Maybe it's movies or the Internet. The influences provided by society today are certainly different from in the past.”

He added that with technology today, consequences of bullying are so much more severe.

“I have heard that some people have had to change their names because of what they've posted on Facebook in the past is now affecting their careers,” Zylka said.

At its February meeting — the first since winter break — the group had the police chief from Connellsville and the assistant police chief from Scottdale talk about crime in the area.

“A lot of praise has to be given to our public servants who put their lives on the line every day for our safety,” Zylka said. “The Bullskin Township Neighborhood Watch has a primary goal of supporting these often unsung heroes.”

Zylka said Tuesday's meeting would be one for parents or individuals concerned with bullying to bring children.

Rachel Basinger is a freelance writer.

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