Standing up to bullying; arrests made

Tickled pink – Goodwood School students and staff celebrated Bullying-Free week.

Last Friday Youth Aid officer Constable Dani Hibdige and I visited both Cambridge Middle and Cambridge High Schools to support Pink Shirt Friday.

Youth Aid officer Constable Danica Hibdige with Charlie, 3, and Mischa, 5, Beadle.

It was great to see so many students getting dressed up.   We are regularly hearing incidents of bullying amongst our youth, in both online and physical form.  The psychological impact on victims is huge, affecting self-esteem, confidence and their schooling.  If we stand by and let it happen or video and share incidents, we must also share some responsibility for this harm.  If we all speak out and speak up to intervene or prevent bullying, we can create a more positive society.

If your child hears that a friend or classmate is being targeted by bullies, please encourage them to tell you, a teacher or other adult – if they don’t feel able to address the bully themselves.  The more this behaviour goes unchallenged, the more it appears acceptable, expands and continues. Often there are issues at play which lead to the bullying behaviour, and which can be addressed with the student if brought to light.

Also on Friday, we responded to a detection of a stolen plate in Cambridge.  This led to the arrest of a female shoplifter from Hamilton. She has been referred to Te Pae Oranga (TPO), an alternative resolution process to address the causative issues that may have contributed to the offending. TPO looks to interrupt the cycle of offending, through identifying and resolving the motivations and problems driving it.  To qualify, an offender needs to accept and admit their offence, and engage with the panel and resulting plan. If they fail to complete the process, they will be referred back to the courts.

Deb Hann

In other news, I don’t want to be saying it, but we continue to have thefts from cars, and the cars themselves stolen, when they have been left insecure. Thieves are opportunists and will walk along a street, trying car door handles as they go. If your car door opens, you have just effectively invited them to steal from you. Prevention as they say is better than cure. If you leave your car unlocked and an offender steals it, it facilitates a whole chain of illegal activity as it will almost certainly then be used to commit further crimes.

To finish, I am looking forward to meeting with the Roto-o-Rangi community today evening to discuss crime prevention, neighbourhood support and community patrols. We’ll be at the Roto-o-Rangi Hall at 7pm.  Have a good week.

By Staff Reporter

Meanwhile police say they have made a raft of arrests following a series of burglaries and thefts in Cambridge.

The most high-profile recent incident involved a ram raid on the Victoria St Spark offices which prompted a passerby to ram the get away car.

Police say there has been an increase in burglaries since the start of the month and they had been able to link the offences to a number of offenders.

By Tuesday 34 charges have been laid, including burglary and shoplifting.

“We work hard to hold offenders to account to ensure the safety of our community,” says Cambridge sergeant Ben Joll.

He said quick action by retailers and the community in alerting police to many of the offences had in some cases enabled staff to apprehend offenders attempting to flee.

Students, staff and parents turned Goodwood School pink as part of their Bullying-Free New Zealand Week celebrations.
On Friday – christened Pink Shirt Day – work places, schools and individuals wore pink to make a stand against bullying.
Goodwood School principal David Graham said bullying was a serious issue in New Zealand “and everyone has a part to play to ensure that it has no place in schools, workplaces or online”.
Bullying-Free week coincided with the visit of the Waipā/King Country Life Education classroom to Goodwood, along with ambassador Harold the giraffe.
“The Life Education classes reinforced the school’s messages of how to build and sustain healthy friendships and how to seek support when it is needed,” Graham said.

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