In 2007, Berwick Nova Scotia, after a new student at their school was bullied for wearing a pink shirt, two grade 12 students bought 50 pink shirts and encouraged their classmates to wear pink. The next day they went to distribute the shirts and to their surprise the majority of students arrived wearing pink! With that act of kindness, Pink Shirt Day was born.
In recognition of the Berwick event, Nova Scotia proclaimed the second Thursday of September “Stand Up Against Bullying Day.” In 2008, British Columbia proclaimed February 27th to be the provincial anti-bullying day, and the movement has continued to grow. In 2012, the United Nations declared May 4 as Anti-Bullying Day, and now the last Wednesday each February is Canada’s national Pink Shirt/anti-bullying day.
Many countries now recognize specific days for raising awareness about the prevention of bullying and promoting kindness and inclusion. In Canada, many students have heard the Pink Shirt Day message from kindergarten through to their high school graduation. The movement continues to grow.