The Bon-Ton Stores Inc., Partners With STOMP Out Bullying

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Back to school...Back to bullying prevention with STOMP Out Bullying™

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STOMP Out Bullying™ announces its partnership with The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc. (NASDAQ: BONT) in conjunction with the Fourth Annual BLUE SHIRT DAY™ WORLD DAY OF BULLYING PREVENTION, which will kick off National Bullying Prevention Awareness month during October. The BLUE SHIRT DAY™ WORLD DAY OF BULLYING PREVENTION is an initiative of STOMP Out Bullying™ to combat bullying and cyber bullying.

As students prepare to return to school, the one thing many are not looking forward to is being bullied. This is the reality for many at school, on playgrounds and online. In fact, 13 million students will be bullied this year in the United States.

To signify the importance of National Bullying Prevention Awareness month, STOMP Out Bullying™, a signature program of Love Our Children USA™, created BLUE SHIRT DAY™ WORLD DAY OF BULLYING PREVENTION. It is observed on the first Monday of October. On this day, the organization asks students and adults alike to make Monday, October 1, the day that bullying prevention is heard around the world by wearing a Blue Shirt in solidarity with STOMP Out Bullying. This is a call to action for students and schools across the country and hundreds of schools have agreed to participate with many more expected to join.

This year’s campaign in partnership with Bon-Ton – which includes its eight nameplates across the country: Bon-Ton, Bergner’s, Boston Store, Carson’s, Elder-Beerman, Herberger’s, Parisian and Younkers – not only offers a newly designed limited edition blue shirt, created and produced by Sledge USA, but offers a Public Service Announcement (“PSA”) created by Avrett Free Ginsberg, produced by Curious Pictures and distributed by Tylie Jones. The PSA will air on major TV and cable networks, as well as online. Additionally, a social media campaign will be a large component of the campaign created by teen celebrities.

Ross Ellis, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of STOMP Out Bullying™ said: "Kids who are intimidated, threatened or harmed by bullies and cyber bullies, often experience low self-esteem and depression. Some take their lives as an alternative. Many do not understand how extreme bullying can get. Parents, teachers and school administrators must use a great deal of sensitivity in handling these issues. They must also work to make the victims more resilient, as well as work to help change the behavior of the bully. Schools can no longer sweep this issue under the rug."

STOMP Out Bullying™ offers students a safe haven providing information, resources and an online area where youths can talk about the issue. Students can also get involved in social media efforts, upload videos about their experience with bullying and why they want to end bullying. In addition, there is a HelpChat Line for kids and teens who are bullied, cyber bullied and at-risk for suicide, which was created in June, 2011. The HelpChat Line has helped over 3,700 students and is credited for saving 61 lives to date. STOMP Out Bullying™ asks kids, teens and adults to participate in BLUE SHIRT DAY™ WORLD DAY OF BULLYING PREVENTION by wearing the STOMP Out Bullying™ “2012 Limited-Edition” blue T-shirt or their own blue shirt – as long as they GO BLUE!

The price of each shirt is $12 and Bon-Ton will donate $8 of each sale to STOMP Out Bullying™. In addition to being the official BLUE SHIRT DAY™ WORLD DAY OF BULLYING PREVENTION sponsor, Bon-Ton has created an interactive social media campaign that offers shoppers discounts and an additional donation to the program. To launch the program, Bon-Ton will host a back-to-school sweepstakes on their Facebook page from August 1 through September 7.

Brendan Hoffman, President and CEO, The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc., said, "All of us at the Bon-Ton stores want to make a difference in our children's lives during this back-to-school season and what better way than to support STOMP Out Bullying, a national organization focused on eradicating bullying in our schools and communities. Our hope is that parents, teachers and students will participate in the Fourth Annual BLUE SHIRT DAY™ WORLD DAY OF BULLYING PREVENTION and stand up to bullies everywhere."

Ellis commented: “We are very grateful to our partners who are joining us in this fight to STOMP Out Bullying. Bullying can be so painful and has clearly played a role in many suicides across the country. In addition, cyber bullying is in full force with the use of social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and other sites popular with kids and teens. This social online cruelty is used by individuals or groups intending to harm our youth. Bullying starts as early as kindergarten. We have to look to prevention as a community issue. It’s up to parents, schools, law enforcement and students to work together to educate and prevent – putting an end to violence and suicides. Students should be educated about the harmful effects of bullying and cyber bullying. They can begin by observing and participating in National Bullying Prevention Awareness month and BLUE SHIRT DAY™ WORLD DAY OF BULLYING PREVENTION. Recent statistics show that 1 out of 4 kids is bullied; 9 out of 10 LGBT students experience harassment at school; depending on their ages, up to 40% of kids and teens report being digitally harassed and approximately 160,000 kids stay home from school each day due to the fear of being bullied.”

To learn more about how you can help your child handle bullying or if your child is a bully, visit

About STOMP Out Bullying
A national anti-bullying and cyberbullying program for kids and teens is a signature program of Love Our Children USA. Created in 2005, it focuses on reducing and preventing bullying, cyberbullying, sexting and other digital abuse, educating against homophobia, racism and hatred, decreasing school absenteeism, and deterring violence in schools, online and in communities across the country. It teaches effective solutions on how to respond to all forms of bullying; as well as educating kids and teens in school and online, providing help for those in need and at risk of suicide, raising awareness, peer mentoring programs in schools, public service announcements by noted celebrities, and social media campaigns. An additional focus educates parents on how to keep their children safe and responsible online., Twitter: @STOMPoutBullyng Hashtag #STOMPOutBullyng

About Bon-Ton:
The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc., with corporate headquarters in York, Pennsylvania and Milwaukee, Wisconsin, operates 272 department stores, which include 11 furniture galleries, in 23 states in the Northeast, Midwest and upper Great Plains under the Bon-Ton, Bergner’s, Boston Store, Carson’s, Elder-Beerman, Herberger’s and Younkers nameplates and, in the Detroit, Michigan area, under the Parisian nameplate. The stores offer a broad assortment of national and private brand fashion apparel and accessories for women, men and children, as well as cosmetics and home furnishings. The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc. is an active and positive participant in the communities it serves. NASDAQ: BONT,, Twitter: @thebonton

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Jayne Lynch
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