Gossiping, hair pulling, pinching or spreading rumours about another person could soon fall under a new anti-bullying bylaw in Saskatoon.
The proposed bylaw heading to city council on Monday would make bullying illegal in public places like parks and restaurants. However, council can also choose to add schools and school sites as well.
Work on the bylaw began over two years ago after council asked city administration for a legal way to address concerns about bullying in the community. Stakeholders provided their input in advance.
“The intent of the bylaw is to recognize the role of all levels of government and community agencies in combatting bullying and in creating a positive environment,” city solicitor Patricia Warwick said in a release.
“One of the Bylaw’s purposes is to compliment the education, prevention and awareness initiatives administered through the school system.”
The draft bylaw defines bullying as a comment or action intended to causes harm, fear or physical or psychological distress to another person.
It would apply to any person 12 years and older. The fine for a first offence would be capped at $300 with escalating fines for repeat offenders.
If approved, the earliest the bylaw could be in effect is Sept. 1.