April 21, 2023 New York Times article is a good-news story about bullying because it underlines that it’s possible to address bullying head-on

In previous posts, I have written about bullying in everyday life, about the relationship between bullying and power, and about what is required to be done in order to address bullying. The purpose of the current post is to bring attention to the fact that a slide deck and a recording of a Zoom talk by Wendy Craig of Queen’s University, Kingston, Canada is available. You can find these items at this link: https://ed.buffalo.edu/alberti/events/colloquium-series.html

An April 21, 2023 New York Times article is a good-news story about bullying, in my view, because it underlines that, on occasion, it is possible to address bullying head-on. The New York Times article is entitled: “Dominic Raab, U.K. Deputy Prime Minister, Resigns Amid Bullying Scandal.” The subhead reads: “The hard-line Brexiteer, one of Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s most loyal political allies, was found by an independent inquiry to have mistreated subordinates.” The opening paragraphs read:

Dominic Raab, Britain’s deputy prime minister, resigned on Friday after an investigation found that he had bullied subordinates, as Prime Minister Rishi Sunak struggles to put a legacy of scandal behind his Conservative government.

Mr. Raab, a hard-line Brexiteer who is one of Mr. Sunak’s most loyal political allies, had long denied allegations of abusive behavior. But the investigation, by an independent barrister, examined eight cases in which civil servants accused Mr. Raab, who also serves as justice secretary, of mistreating them.

The inquiry report published Friday found that in one instance, he acted in a way that was “intimidating, in the sense of unreasonably and persistently aggressive conduct in the context of a work meeting.” In another, his conduct involved “an abuse or misuse of power in a way that undermines or humiliates.” It found no clear evidence of bullying in several of the other cases.

Previous posts about bullying

Click here for previous posts about bullying >

Previous posts include, for example, the following:

Addressing Power in Bullying is About Gender and Income Inequality – online talk by Wendy Craig, PhD, Queen’s University – slides and recording are available

To address bullying, we need to apply what has been learned from observational studies of children at play

Schoolyard bullies crop up in all walks of life

Aside from addressing bullying, Marjorie H. Goodwin (2006) focuses on collaboration and agency

What takes place in Europe now underlines the continuity of history going back to 1945

Reflections regarding the overthrow of Nicolae Ceaușescu of Romania in December 1989

“Why I Left The CBC And Its Toxic Atmosphere” – Linden MacIntyre, Oct. 22, 2014 Huffington Post

Also of relevance are other previous posts including:

Beyond Totalitarianism (2009) features specialist essays comparing Nazi and Stalinist mass murder in the 1930s and 1940s

3 replies
  1. Jaan Pill
    Jaan Pill says:

    An April 21, 2023 Guardian article is entitled: “Dominic Raab: how the Guardian revealed bullying allegations: How the story has unfolded since Ministry of Justice sources first spoke out about his behaviour.”

    An excerpt reads:

    Friday 11 November 2022

    Ministry of Justice sources told the Guardian that senior civil servants had been offered “respite or a route out” of the department when Raab was reappointed by Sunak the previous month, amid concerns that some were still traumatised by his behaviour during a previous stint there.

    We also reported that Antonia Romeo, the permanent secretary, had spoken to Raab when he returned to the department to warn him that he must treat staff professionally and with respect.

    The Guardian also spoke to a number of sources in the MoJ who claimed Raab had been “demeaning rather than demanding”, was “very rude and aggressive” and that he “wasn’t just unprofessional, he was a bully” to civil servants.

    Raab came out fighting, with one source close to the minister saying he “makes no apologies” for having high standards. “He works hard, and expects a lot from his team as well as himself.”

  2. Jaan Pill
    Jaan Pill says:

    A Nov. 13, 2023 Global News article is entitled: “The little university that could(n’t): UPEI’s nightmare behind closed doors.”

    An excerpt reads:

    A “concerning” number of people experienced things that went against the university’s fair treatment and sexual violence policies, the report said. It documented cases of misogynistic comments from graduate students and supervisors, as well as “lewd comments and suggestions” from professors to students. The behaviour “carried on for years without being addressed in any meaningful way, despite multiple complaints.”

    But due to “obstacles,” including the non-disclosure agreements, the report said it “cannot, at this time, provide the university with a clear picture of the former president’s behaviour or its response to it.”

    “We heard of instances of screaming and yelling among staff, faculty, and students, belittling or overly critical managers and faculty, gossiping and backstabbing, favouritism, the targeting of students by faculty for mistreatment, and the use of intimidation tactics,” the report said.

  3. Jaan Pill
    Jaan Pill says:

    A Nov. 7, 2023 London Free Press article is entitled: “Conditional discharge for teen who stabbed two bullies near high school: A teenager charged in a double stabbing near a north London high school last year was bullied, beat up and forced to beg for mercy from two teens prior to the attack, his lawyer says.”

    An excerpt reads:

    Ontario Court Justice Craig Sigurdson accepted the joint submission from Dean and the Crown, noting the defendant is a dedicated student with no prior criminal record.

    “I also understand the context of this incident which was very carefully explored at the judicial pretrial over which I presided back in the summer,” Sigurdson said. “(The defendant) was the victim of ongoing bullying by various students at the high school.”

    But Sigurdson cautioned the teen that carrying a weapon is never a good idea and said he’d prosecuted multiple homicide cases resulting from a single stab wound prior to becoming a judge.


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