Community Police & Fire

Anti-Cyber Bullying Hotline

Anti-Cyber Bullying Hotline – (617) 534-5050

Mayor Menino last week announced a series of initiatives aimed at
increasing the awareness and assistance for anti-bullying efforts in
Boston. As part of this announcement it was determined a hotline would
be helpful as a way of anonymously reporting online and other forms of
bullying. The hotline is now available and is staffed by trained
public health professionals from the Boston Public Health Commission
working in partnership with the city’s Law Department, the Boston
Public Schools and the Boston Police Department.

“This hotline is an important resource that will give students a place
to express concerns and report physical and/or online bullying that
they see or experience,” said Mayor Menino. “The Boston Public Health
Commission is working closely with the Boston Public Schools, the Law
Department and Boston Police Department as part of the city’s robust
effort to provide families, young people and the public all across the
city with the information and support they need to address this very
serious issue.”

The hotline is available Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to
5 p.m. and operated by trained staff from the Boston
Public Health Commission. Call takers will complete an
initial intake on calls related to bullying, which will
allow the caller to describe concerns, request specific
assistance, and will screen for emergency situations that
require an immediate response by public safety. Callers
can also use the hotline to anonymously report bullying

“Cyber bullying is a very serious and growing problem affecting youth,
and we are committed to helping the Mayor in his initiatives to curb
this trend,” said Dr. Barbara Ferrer, executive director of the Boston
Public Health Commission. “We are working in partnership with the
Boston Public Schools, the Boston Police Department and the Mayor’s
Corporation Counsel to ensure an immediate and effective response to
bullying incidents in support of local students, teachers, and

Other targeted efforts to address a message of tolerance and friendship include:

· A letter from the Mayor to social networking sites calling for a
streamlined and intense effort to combat cyber-bullying; · Increased
outreach efforts to raise the awareness level of parents through
flyers, letters and workshops framing and clarifying the issue; · A
letter from the Mayor and BPS Superintendent Dr. Carol R. Johnson to
parents about the efforts to confront the issue head-on; · Providing
increased training as an added requirement for all employees who work
directly with youth to help identify and prevent bullying; · A new
hotline and other “safe places” for young people to vent, express
concerns and report bullying; · Produce and broadcast a public service
announcement and other media to raise awareness.

Mayor Menino also highlighted investments already underway within BPS

· High school students who are paid through external grants work
during the summer months as cyber-mentors educating their peers about
the dangers of cyber bullying and other cyber safety tips; · An
extensive campaign and curriculum in the BPS aimed at educating
elementary and middle school students on the issue of cyber-bullying.
· A website dedicated to raising awareness about cyber safety issues:

In addition to requesting assistance from social networking sites,
Mayor Menino also invited representatives from the websites including
Facebook, MySpace and Twitter to come to Boston for a forum to discuss
next steps in the prevention of cyber bullying. Representatives from
Microsoft have already reached out to Mayor Menino to inquire as to
how they may help in the city’s efforts.