Kim Loik, the mother of a 15-year-old Canadian boy who committed suicide this week, is calling for sweeping legislation to address cyber-bullying across the country.
Loik claims her son, Todd, had initially been targeted by bullies in the schoolyard five years ago and only recently began receiving insults and threats online, more specifically through his Facebook page. Loik told the National Post this week that Todd wouldn’t let her see a chain of taunts he received the night before he took his life. She “told him to go to bed and not worry about it.”
They’re “disgusting,” Kim said of the messages, which she is now using in a crusade to help end the vicious cycle. “They have pages and pages of taunts and abuse. They were the nastiest things I’ve ever heard. I can’t even repeat — some of the things were just disgusting.”
Kim said she was unsure of why her son was targeted for torment, but the treatment had become so unbearable that the two planned to escape by moving back to their hometown of Edmonton, Alberta later this year. Shannon Lessard, a spokeswoman for North Battleford Comprehensive High School, where Todd was enrolled in 10th grade, said school officials were unaware of the bullying because it had gone unreported.
Kim has since set up a Facebook page in memory of Todd — Todd Loik’s Safe Haven. In the months to come, she has also vowed to lobby for laws across Canada that will protect victims of bullying and their families.
On Wednesday, Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall told reporters that the province is looking into anti-bullying initiatives.