Whistle blowing Policy? – Anti Bullying Policy?   16 comments


Please can you respect this request – if you comment on this particular blog that you do not add any names of people you think might be involved – as this is not about those particular people – it is about making a stand against bullies generally.


This is going to be the hardest blog that I have ever written – and it may well be my last, because I am sure that it will create a reaction – I am just not sure at this stage, if I will be supported by colleagues or become the victim of more of what I am going to write about.

The person (s) concerned – those responsible will not be named.

People will come to their own conclusions that I am writing about them, or someone they know. People will come to their own conclusions about who these people are that shared information with me.

But let’s be clear – if a person is named in a private message or in an email or in a conversation, (and it is not specifically requested that the information is kept confidential – and the reason why given,) if that information is shared with the person named in the communications, or with another person as part of upholding a whistle blowing or a anti bullying policy – it is not breaking the law, it is not breaking data protection, it is not even breaking confidentiality.

And in any case, although it is true that if a person is named in a public format, that they can ask for information to be removed – they can ask but they can’t insist.

Of course it would be different if the information posted was inaccurate or a fabrication – and in that case MAYBE action could be taken.

However in this situation though the person(s)  is/ are not going to be named – and although the information is inaccurate and at times complete fabrication – that information is also not going to be pasted here.

People may assume they know who the person (s) are but I am not going to confirm or deny – I will remain silent about these details.

The crux of the problem is – bullies rely on threatening people, or frightening them and in making them feel that they are in the wrong – because the bully makes the victim feel that the bully is bigger, stronger, has powerful connections, has money to support them. And online bullying is the worse, as they feel no one can touch them, prove any thing  – they attack the victim’s weak point, they keep up the campaign of bullying until the victim can take no more.

And all the time they claim their innocence, that they have been the victim, that they would not hurt a fly and so on.

Anyone who has had to deal with bullying will know how hard it is to get to the bottom of the issue, anyone who has tried to whistle blow in a work place setting knows that often no one believes them, often people they thought of as good friends or close colleagues desert them and don’t believe them – it can be a very lonely place for the whistle blower and it can be a very lonely place for a victim – when they see the people they thought had listened, had believed them, had said how dreadful – still associate with the bully and in doing so reinforce the bullies view that they are right, that everyone needs them – can’t possibly do with out them.

And the victim even though he or she may have a few colleagues who fully support and believe 100% what is going on – it does not stop the bullying, it does not stop the victim thinking what is the point in continuing with what I am trying to do, it does stop the victim – when alone at night and the night terrors kick in thinking about what this stronger, more influential, more powerful, more able to withstand any consequences that may impact on how to earn a living – will do next.

It is shocking, it is dreadful, it is soul destroying and it can potentially not only ruin lives but end lives.

So you the reader may be wondering why I, Penny Webb am writing this, some of the readers will know, some will not – and so without naming people, without passing on information about the things that have been communicated about me in writing, by email, by private messages, through verbal communication – and not to just one person but to several people over the course of the last 9 – 12 months, I will tell you.

Basically the bully(s) is / are sending messages to people that they know will pass on to me – in one it even  said something on the lines of ‘I know you will pass this on’ – so this is deliberate.

My weak spot is being targeted – the person (s) concerned knows I lack confidence, they know I hate confrontation, they know that I find writing difficult and that I often make spelling and grammar errors – not to mention lots of typo’s.

So they mention things related to my weaknesses.

They know that I want to share information with all early years settings – so they make that difficult.

They know that I do my best to support colleagues, to be fair, to be helpful, for nothing to be too much trouble if a colleague needs support – so they suggest that I don’t support, that I make things difficult for colleagues.

They know that I spend hours and hours of my own time – for free – every week – and have been even more so for over 18 months to stand up and be counted and to try to ensure that any changes made to the regulations of early year settings are in the best interest of the children – and they know that I am doing everything I can to inform those that are taking the Children and Families Bill through the House of Commons and the House of Lords about childminding agencies – so they suggest that I am making things worse, that I should leave things to them .

And you might be thinking so what? – it is not a big deal, just rise above it

And I will despite the night terrors and the moments when I am at my lowest ebb


There is more to this – this person (s) is / are early years people who work with children and families in various ways – if they can do this to me, to other colleagues through sweeping statements about those who connect with me in any way – could they (not saying they do) but could they also say such hurtful things about the parents using their service, or even about the children? As I say, not saying they do, but it is a known fact that bullies need help – need support because if they do it once they could do it again.

BUT there is another important message here – about the children we care for – I am struggling with this bullying and I am adult, I get night terrors and I can turn on a light,  go downstairs and make a drink – and take my mind off things – a child can not. I can talk openly, I can do my research about such things and know that I am in the right – a child can not.

So although this bullying is having a huge impact on my life – it is NOTHING compared to the impact on a child, so as early years professionals we must be vigilant for signs that a child is being bullied, we must listen to the children and believe what they tell us, we must follow our whistle blowing and anti bullying policies and not remain silent.

It is NOT acceptable in ANY circumstance towards children or towards adults.

Which is why I have decided to write this blog, why I am risking losing friends.  Why I am risking negative comments from colleagues, and yes why I am risking being the target of even more / worse bullying.

My ethos, values and principles will not allow me to remain silent any longer – in fact I am ashamed that as a fully grown woman, that it has taken me so long to speak up.

I hope that not only the person (s) responsible for my bullying take notice – and think about the policies and procedures that they have for their workplace (s) – and actually follow them.

I hope those who think it is dreadful, that it should not be allowed, that something should be done about – but who still associate in any way with a person or persons that they know to be bullies – have to strength to challenge the bully and yes to support them as the bully will also need friends and colleagues to help them stop this bullying.

I also hope all those who are a victim of bullying or who are trying to deal with the issue of a child they know being bullied but without speaking up  – will be given some strength to do what they know needs doing.

To end – I really hope that I have not offended or upset people and that my ‘real’ friends will still be there for me when they have read this – and that early years colleagues will still want to share information with me, and to continue to campaign against the things we believe are not right.  However if I become ‘Billy No Mates’, I will know that I did what I could to raise awareness of bullying, and anyone who chooses not to be associated with me after reading this – well at least I will know where I stand


Please remember if you comment on this particular blog that you should not add any names of people you think might be involved – as this is not about those particular people – it is about making a stand against bullies in general.

Posted September 2, 2013 by psw260259 in Random Things!

16 responses to “Whistle blowing Policy? – Anti Bullying Policy?

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. Well said Penny. I despise bullying and the way people think that just because they are behind a computer screen that it is acceptable. I appreciate everything you do for the Early Years sector and having met you at the NCMA conference a couple of years back can 100% vouch for your professionalism and passion for both the people who work in EYs and the children in our care. Look after yourself xx

  2. I stand behind you…proud that I know you x

  3. Penny, that is a very brave post, and I admire you for having the strength to write it. I was bullied at school and later in employment, I remember the feelings late at night, in the middle of the night, all encompassing, feeling sick, scared, alone and not being able to think about anything else. I remember crying to my mum that I didn’t want to go to school/work, but I did go, and somehow I got through it. Many, many years on and I have looked my bullies in the eye, I have risen above them, and I know that I am better than them. I pity them, I believe that they were lacking something in their lives, and that they also were jealous/envious of me, which led them to their bullying ways.
    I think I am aware of what is going on, and I am appalled by it, I really am. At least one person that I had held in very high regard has gone way down in my estimation.
    Please, please continue to campaign and work for what you believe in, there are so many of us that will forever be grateful and thankful for what you are doing for us as childminders. Please do not give in to the bullies, and in the middle of the night, please try to think of the vast majority of us that are fully behind you. xxx

  4. I would also like to add my support. Penny, you have worked tirelessly on behalf of childminders and children and you don’t deserve to be waking in the night because of these spineless people. I know who these bullies are and as Aly says, one person in particular who I aspired to be like has shocked me, but not only do I pray I NEVER become anything like this person, I’m sure the truth will come out and everyone will see their true colours. I hope this puts an end to the bullying, but if they insist on continuing, don’t even give them the satisfaction of reading what they have to say. As you say, they are bullying from the safety of a computer screen – just click ‘delete’ and remember those of us who DO appreciate you!

  5. Don’t give up Penny!! The service/information you are providing is so important. Important to the future of childcare in this country and,therefore, to the future of the country itself. Take no notice of bullies….they are too unintelligent to assert their opinions any other way. The fact that you are dyslexic has no relevance to you or your work. Carry on regardless!!!

  6. Penny I am so shocked that anybody could do this to you as you work none stop supporting and encouraging childminders and everything you do is for the best outcome for the children. I now its hard but ignore them but try to and think of yourself as the wonderful person you are. Take care and I believe in what your doing is making a difference and so do a lot of other people.

  7. Bullies are weak, that is why they pick on other people. I was bullied as a child and at work (in an office). One day all the managers had a meeting upstairs and the bully and her mates spent the whole hour they were away chucking things at me in the office and acting like a mob of teenagers.
    That’s when I knew that they were just sad childish individuals. My daughter starts senior school today and I’m dreading it. As I know what girls can be like when they are in groups. But I hope to be able to give all my support to her whatever happens. I’m not bothered about being ‘Billy no mates’ I’ve spent plenty of years alone in the playground. I’d rather have a few real friends than a bunch of hangers on or people who are just friends out of fear of being bullied themselves. Well done for writing this, sometimes the obvious needs to be pointed out and lets hope the people concerned feel shame.

  8. Penny, I am saddened to hear about this, that people in the sector who work with children behave in this manner.

    I am dyslexic and have issues with my grammar and pronunciation. But, I still speak from the heart and I am passionate about children and their families. I hope this comes across in my work, rather, than folks focusing on my grammar, etc.

    My mum, always said those who laugh and ridicule others, are the ignorant ones!

    I shall leave you with a quote from Martin Luther King Jr:

    ‘Almost always, the creative dedicated minority has made the world better.’

  9. You do a fabulous job Penny.
    I think your very brave.
    You have a lot of people who respect what you do…..I am one of them.
    I hate bullies and everything they stand for.

  10. Frankly Penny I would name and shame them. I have no idea who these idiots are but I believe you to be a good person who sacrifices a lot for what we all believe in and there is no justification for hatred and bullying. Whoever they are they should be ashamed of themselves but I would also go as far as to say STOP IT NOW !

  11. Penny
    I am very sad that it has come to this and you have been fored to write this blog, Chin up, best foot forward and remember we are here for the children first and formost their is no place for bullies in early years be it chidlren or adults.

  12. Penny
    I am shocked to read what has been happening to you, I can only say that I admire you even more for doing everything that you have done to help to keep us all informed about the changes taking place while all this has been happening to you. So for myself I would like to say big Thank-you and please keep up your fantastic work.
    PS If it wasn’t foe spell check no-one would understand me.

  13. Penny I have “known” you for 4 yrs and have always appreciated all that you do for all of us working in the ey sector. Sending hugs to you x x

  14. Penny, you give up a lot of your own time to help others in the childminding world and I deeply appreciate that. Please don’t give up – ignore the bullies – they must see you as a big threat to keep this continuing – which means they know you have a lot of support xxx

  15. I think I may have pieced together who the catalyst for this article was and would like to offer my congratulations on your bravery and the way you have made a stand. if my assumptions are correct I have also experienced similar trolling/cyber-bullying from these people, and whilst I cannot claim to have suffered as acutely as you, know that they are vindictive, malicious & unceasing. keep doing what you are doing – it sounds like you’re great at it – and don’t let the lesser inhabitants of the web bring you down. xxx

    • We will never know if your conclusion is correct – but I find it very unprofessional for anyone to bully another person and I am saddened to hear that you have also suffered at the hands of bullies – if the same people or different people

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: