Monday, June 6, 2011

Organization, Victims Speak Out Against Bullying

This story is absolutely horrific! I just cried for this young girl. The only good news at the moment is that the bully who is 15 years old is being charged and treated like an adult. We have a very serious problem in our society that must be corrected immediately. It is unacceptable that here in America a teenager is being bullied every 7 minutes. We all must treat each other with respect and not ridicule. We must not put our head in the sand. Get involved. Bullying is not limited to teenagers. It is happening on our streets and in our work environments. It is time to stand up to bullying and embrace civility. We must be the change we wish to see in the world. We all must look at our own behavior and change. Do you call someone stupid? Stop. That is the beginning of bullying. My heart and prayers are with Josie Ratley and her community. - Kathy Horn

Published : Monday, 06 Jun 2011
Audrey Barnes
FOX 5 Reporter
WASHINGTON - Every seven minutes a teenager is bullied. It's a problem that seems to be getting worse instead of better.
An organization that's trying to reverse the trend launched a national campaign against bullying in Washington DC Sunday.

Organization, Victims Speak Out Against Bullying:

Josie Ratley, the survivor of a brutal bullying incident in Florida was here to focus attention on the problem. It's been 14 months since police say 15 year old Wayne Treacy put on steel toed boots, rode his bike to his local middle school in Florida, and nearly stomped 15 year old Ratley to death.
"I really believe that prayers are the reason my daughter is here now,"Hilda Gotay says.
Gotay can still barely speak about the attack her daughter Josie endured in March of 2010. She's still recovering from the massive brain injuries she suffered after being stomped and kicked in the head.
Sources say Treacy told police he was angry over text messages Ratley sent him telling him to stay away from her 13 year old friend.
After three surgeries and countless hours of physical therapy, Ratley still has a long way to go. She's relearning how to talk and do every day things, but even second grade school work is tough for her now .
Her mom wants people to keep praying for her.
"I don't want them to stop because she's having a lot of problems with her brain and her memory. We just don't know how far she'll be able to learn," Gotay says.
Helping victims like Josie is the mission for the group NVEEE, which started this anti bullying campaign. NVEEE stands for National Voices for Equality, Education, and Enlightenment.
"We provide resources for families, parents, teachers, and students when something like this happesn, but what we really want to do is prevent them from happening,"NVEEE President Jowharah Sanders says.
Gotay has a message for parents which she hopes will prevent some future bullying--make time for your kids.
"I understand there's parents out there with two jobs, whatever, but give that hug or a kiss so that even if he's upset about something when they go to school, they won't take it out on another kid,"Gotay says.
Wayne Treacy has been charged as an adult and is now facing first degree attempted murder charges in connection with Josie's attack.

If you would like more information about NVEEE's anti-bullying efforts, you can find it on their website,


  1. Oh my gosh!! This is horrible and has to stop, not yesterday but a long time ago! My prayers go out to Josie Ratley and her family for her recovery and during this physical and emotional recovery she is having to endure due to this brutality she has gone through.

    As she goes through this and her story is shared, maybe more attention will be brought to the front of what is proving to be a tragic issue in our country, something that is going on everywhere and at every age. This is something that if people don't get involved and speak up, it is able to continue and victims are suffering and are dying because of the lack of resources, help and often the feeling of being alone.

    Sadly, they are far from being alone. Josie is not alone and there are many that bully and they need help as well. This has to stop. Crimes have to stop and the help has to be there for those who want it and need it.

    Praying for you Josie, for your recovery and anything you need.

    Tracy Solomon

  2. My thoughts go out to Josie and her family along with all the other parents, youth and families dealing with the effects of bullying. Whether it's a story like Josie's or those of youth bullied to the point that they take their own life, the impact is devastating and far reaching.

    As a partner in the bullying prevention effort, I applaud organizations such as NVEEE and Make Laughter Count who are saying enough is enough!
    Together, we can all make a difference!

    Christine Small
    Mental Health America of Northeast Florida

  3. Incredibly horrible to hear about this foolish incident to Josie which has now completely changed her life for the worse. It's crazy how far kids go these days. People need to be aware of such audacious acts of bullying and acknowlege that small instances can lead to stuff like this.

  4. I can’t even comprehend the lack of value for life that bullies have. A bullying victim, whether being physically beat or virtually tormented, is getting a piece or sometimes the whole of their life torn away from them. It doesn’t make sense that in a great nation like ours, we don’t unconditionally respect the rights of others to their own opinions, values, differences…my thoughts and prayers to Josie for a full recovery.

  5. This is just horrific! How can human beings commit such violence toward another without conscious or fear of consequence?! We need to reach out in peaceful ways and speak with kindness. Why is there so much judgement and anger toward those who have different beliefs, opinions, cultures, traditions? It is irrational behavior rooted in something I just don't understand. My prayers go out to Josie, her family and our country.

  6. Josie,

    This is Big Mike from Ahmir I just wanted to let you know that this was NOT your fault in any way. You are young beautiful woman and I will be praying for your full recovery. Bullying is a very serious issue and I want you to know that I am trying hard to ensure that this foolishness stops once and for all. Keep your head up always and continue to push forward!

    Big Mike