A Wisconsin town is handing out fines to parents if their kids’ are repeatedly found to be bullying other students.
The just-passed Plover Village Board ordinance allows cops to notify parents in writing of a bullying incident involving their child. If the kid is caught bullying again within 90 days, the parents get a ticket. Factoring in the court costs, an infraction could amount to a fine of $124.
“You’re the parent. You’ve got to have some responsibility in this,” Plover Police Chief Dan Ault explained to Stevens Point Journal Media about the measure. He hopes before tickets are given out, parents will use the first incident as a teachable moment. “If we can intervene before it turns ugly, that’s when we can really make a difference.”
The idea adopted from another town in Wisconsin who passed the law about two years ago. So far, there’s no evidence that the ordinance has reducing bullying but law enforcement in the town haven’t issued any tickets in the two years since it took effect. It’s possibly the threat of monetary loss and the cops getting involved keeps kids from taking things that one step too far.
Will this put an end to bullying? Nothing will ever end kids picking on other kids but it forces parents to take action and hits them where it hurts the most — the wallet. Maybe mom and dad will pay more attention to little Bobby being a dick if it costs them $124 bucks each time. Of course, there’s the argument that bullies are usually created because of some type of bullying at home, but if that’s the case maybe the ticketing will lead to the revealing that home life for the bully isn’t so great and someone needs to step in.