ECEC workplaces encouraged to say NO to workplace bullying on Do It For Dolly Day

ECEC workplaces encouraged to say NO to workplace bullying on Do It For Dolly Day

by Freya Lucas

April 30, 2019

Amy Jayne “Dolly” Everett captured the attention of the nation when she ended her life in January 2018, reportedly after facing cyberbullying. She had previously been the face of an advertising campaign for iconic Australian hat company, Akubra, with her passing prompting a tribute from (then) Prime Minister Malcom Turnbull, Australian boxer Jeff Horn, and other prominent figures.


Following her death, Dolly’s parents launched a social media campaign using the hashtag #DoItForDolly to raise awareness of the effects of bullying, prompting a national discussion about the issue, and sharing a drawing created by Dolly of a figure underneath the words “stand up, speak even if your voice shakes”.


As part of the wider circle of awareness in relation to bullying, education services and workplaces around Australian are being asked to take a stand against bullying at the inaugural Do It For Dolly Day on Friday 10 May.


The issue of workplace bullying in the early childhood education and care (ECEC) sector has been noted in the media, with The Sector previously reporting on research from Roy Morgan showing that one in three employees across all sectors have experienced bullying at work, with 40.6 per cent of those working in education claiming to have experienced workplace bullying.


A respondent to the 2018 Valued Workforce Survey, conducted by Australian Education and Care Workforce Professional Body (ECW) spoke on the topic of leaving the ECEC sector, saying “Nearly 20 years in the industry (sic) and I’m over the apathy from educators and the culture of bullying in the sector.”


The same survey revealed that 30 per cent of those working in ECEC had a workplace which was rarely or never free from bullying, with 27 per cent of respondents saying they were often experiencing workplace bullying.


Organisers of Do It For Dolly Day said they hoped for a community show of strength around Australia, driving home the anti bullying message, with an end result of everyone feeling brave enough to speak out against bullying.


Those wishing to participate can commemorate Dolly’s life, and support the Everett Family’s mission by “going blue” and holding a fundraising event to provide valuable resources to those experiencing bullying.


Dolly’s mother, Kate Everett, said remembering to always treat others with respect was a positive first step in lessening the impact of bullying.


“Blue was Dolly’s favourite colour, and we are hoping that creating a sea of blue on Do It For Dolly Day will remind people to be kind to those around them,” Ms Everett said.


Further information and fundraising ideas can be found here.