7-year-old girl gets death threat on school bus
Young girl is in counselling for nightmares and anxiety
An Oromocto mother is calling for extra protection for her seven-year-old daughter after the girl received a death threat on the school bus.
The mother, who is not being identified to protect her daughter, said a middle school student told the girl he would choke her to death with his shoelace.
The girl is still in counselling seven weeks after the incident for nightmares and anxiety
"I was really angry that somebody would do this to my kid, not to mention the trauma that it's put her through because that's what it is — it's a trauma," the mother said.
"My child, at seven years old, received a death threat. It's affected the whole family. I mean, having to deal with her. You know, everyone sort of had to understand what's happening to her and you know sometime she gets really emotional and you know it's because of that."
The mother said her child is still traumatized about the threat.
"She would start to get pains in her stomach. Sometimes she would vomit and she would just start to cry," the mother said.
"She was scared that the person that did this to her was going to retaliate because this young gentleman told her that if she said anything, he was going to harm her even further."
The mother said school administrators interviewed children who were on the bus at the time of the incident and have offered to set her up with a bus buddy when she's ready to go back.
She's been told there isn't enough money to hire bus monitors and volunteers are not allowed because of union rules.
The School District 17 superintendent has asked bus drivers to make sure they keep space between younger and older students on their buses.
He's also ordered schools to include talks about bus behaviour in their assemblies
The boy, who is 14 years old, was suspended from the bus route for a week. However, the teen was not suspended from school.
The mother said police informed her last week that he will be facing charges in court.
Recent bullying incidents
New Brunswick schools have witnessed several recent stories about bullying.
In February, a Fredericton mother told her daughter's story about how she was bullied so badly several years ago that she hired a body guard to protect her.
As well, a Fredericton couple pulled their son out of Leo Hayes High School in Fredericton after what they say has been months of degrading harassment by another student.
Also in February, a 15-year-old boy was charged with assault with a weapon after a 14-year-old girl's hair was set on fire in a Saint John school's classroom.
Education Minister Jody Carr has announced he plans to add more anti-bullying laws.
He said there will be new legislation introduced this spring. He has said there must be consequences for repeat bullies, but he said removing students from school should be a last resort.