Wisconsin town fines parents when child bullies
PLOVER, Wisconsin - A small town in central Wisconsin came up with a new way to tackle the issue of bullying by fining the accused bully's parents.
Last month, Plover Police Chief Dan Ault saw a chance to make a difference. For Ault, the best way to have an impact on kids happens in the home.
"It's not the school's responsibility to raise the kids. It's the school's job to teach the kids. It's not the police's job to raise your kids. It's the parent's job to raise the kids," says Ault.
Plover passed the anti-bullying ordinance proposed by Ault. Now, parents can face a fine of $124 if police determine their child has bullied people multiple times within 90 days. Once bullying is reported to police, they investigate the case and inform the parents. The first offense is just a warning.
"If they don't know what to do, we'll be able to provide some guidance on who to contact. Do kids have disputes, yes, but this repeated behavior where somebody you know, is intentionally being malicious, that's when we're involved," said Ault.
For Ault, if the ordinance helps even one person he'll consider it a success. The police chief says so far police have received no bullying complaints.