Children with physical disabilities are twice as likely to be bullied, impacting their educational, physical and emotional development. In support of National Bullying Prevention Month, Shriners Hospitals for Children and award-winning actor RJ Mitte are partnering to encourage teens and adults alike to join them and help end bullying.

Born with cerebral palsy, Mitte was treated by the medical experts at Shriners Hospitals for Children for most of his childhood. He has since overcome many of the physical and verbal effects of cerebral palsy. Now, as a Love to the Rescue ambassador for Shriners Hospitals for Children, Mitte advocates for accepting people for who they are, regardless of their physical appearances.

“My disability made me a target for bullies,” said Mitte. “I was harassed, knocked down and even had my hand broken. But, I was lucky. I had my friends, my family and Shriners Hospitals for Children to help me become stronger – inside and out.”

#CutTheBull reminds everyone that even though someone may look, talk or walk differently, they should be seen for who they are and what they can accomplish. At supporters can share Mitte’s story and take a pledge to be the one in their school or community to take a stand against bullying.

Shriners Hospitals for Children provides specialty pediatric care for children with orthopaedic conditions, spinal cord injuries, burns, and cleft lip and palate, regardless of a family’s ability to pay. Many of its patients experience severe physical disabilities or visible scars, which puts them at a greater risk of being bullied.

“At Shriners Hospitals for Children we treat the whole child, providing the highest level of both physical and psychological care to our patients. We encourage our young patients to be proud of who they are and to see beyond their disability,” stated Dale Stauss, Chairman of the Board of Directors at Shriners Hospitals for Children. “Challenging the public to stop bullying kids with disabilities is just another way we send Love to the rescue.”

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