United in Kindness Month 2023!

The Tompkins County Legislature has proclaimed October “United in Kindness Month.” Legislature Chairwoman Shawna Black issued the proclamation after the Tompkins County Bullying Prevention Task Force coordinated a series of 13 events with kindness themes for the month.

Chairwoman Shawna Black presents proclamation to Task Force member Brandi Remington

Brandi Remington, Youth Development Coordinator at TST BOCES and Task Force member, was on hand to receive the proclamation at a legislative meeting on October 3.

“October is National Bullying Prevention Month, Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and includes Digital Citizenship Week,” Remington said in remarks to the Legislature.

“Every time I read that list, my heart feels a little heavy. It brings to the forefront of my mind all of the power imbalances and unacceptable behaviors that need to be healed in our community. It reminds me of the struggles our students, families, and neighbors face, and reminds me of the problems and barriers we have to overcome before we truly have a community where there is justice and dignity for all.”

But Remington recalled words of the philosopher Buckminster Fuller, “You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.”

She said that the United in Kindness series “is meant to showcase all the great work taking place in our community and remind us that each of our individual efforts come together to create a culture of acceptance and kindness.”

“With this series we aim to bring our young people, their families, and every single one of our neighbors together to remind them that there is another way of existing: one in which we are not competing for power, airtime, or ‘Likes’ on social media, and where we let our emotions pass through us before we speak or respond.

“This is where we value the inherent worth of every human being, celebrate diversity, and share our individual bounties of abundance- whether those are physical resources and tools, knowledge, and information, or even the simple abundance of joy, because this is what a community united in kindness looks like.”

VIEW OR DOWNLOAD: United in Kindness Event Series for October 2023

The proclamation reads as follows:

Tompkins County Legislature


WHEREAS, bullying has been identified as a prevalent and serious problem affecting today’s youth, and

WHEREAS, types of youth bullying include physical, verbal, and relational bullying, as well as cyberbullying that involves threatening or harassing electronic communications, and

WHEREAS, 20 percent of teens nationally report being bullied at school, and 46 percent of teens nationally report being cyberbullied, and

WHEREAS, bullying has psychological, physical, and academic effects, and adversely affects youth who are bullied as well as those who engage in bullying, and

WHEREAS, more than two dozen government agencies, community organizations, parents, and representatives from the County’s six school districts formed the Tompkins County Bullying Prevention Task Force in March 2019, and

WHEREAS, the Task Force’s mission is to facilitate comprehensive cooperation across the community in developing and promoting appropriate bullying prevention and response strategies in Tompkins County, and

WHEREAS, every member of the Tompkins County community, government agencies, community organizations, school administrators, teachers, athletic coaches, parents, and students can play a part in creating a bully-free environment in our schools, athletics fields, public spaces, and online websites, and

WHEREAS, the Task Force organizes a series of “United in Kindness” educational events and activities in October to fight bullying and domestic violence and to promote kindness and empathy throughout our community, now therefore be it

RESOLVED, That the Tompkins County Legislature does hereby proclaim the month of October 2023 as


In Tompkins County.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I, Shawna Black, have hereunto set my hand and caused to be affixed the great seal of Tompkins County, State of New York, on this 3rd day of October 2023.

DOWNLOAD: United in Kindness Month proclamation