Disablist bullying is behaviour or language that makes a child or young person feel unwelcome or marginalised because of a perceived or actual disability or additional need.

Disablist bullying is wrong and it must be stopped.

Disablist bullying is a specific form of bullying motivated by prejudice against disabled people.  This can be related to a perceived or actual disability/additional need.  By perceived, we mean that some children may treat a physical or ‘behavioural’ characteristic of another child as a disability, and exclude or bully because of that, even though the child him/herself does not consider they have a disability.  The other children may regard this characteristic as a disability either through genuine misunderstanding or because of an intolerance of difference.

Like other types of bullying, disablist bullying can take many different forms and happen online, via phone or in the physical world.  Examples of disablist bullying can include:

  • Being called mean names linked to a disability/additional need
  • Being left out because of their perceived or actual disability/additional need
  • Being spat at or kicked because of their perceived or actual disability/additional need

For more information on defining disablist bullying, click here.

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