(SoapOperaNetwork.com) — Jack’s (Andrew Trischitta) tormenting of Shane (Austin Williams) takes on a near deadly tone this week as “One Life to Live’s” bullying storyline reaches its zenith with Shane prompting suicide in order to escape the pain and humiliation he has been enduring for months. The show recently joined forces with STOMP Out Bullying to help draw attention to the issue, which “One Life” Executive Producer Frank Valentini describes “as so disturbing and far too prominent. Our objective is to shine a light on the cruelty of bullying through our storytelling and if we can help make a difference for one person, then I think we have been hugely successful. The response to this story has been powerful.”
According to an ABC press release, “Since the creation of ‘One Life to Live’ in 1968, the show has always looked for opportunities to inform while entertaining. Child and teen bullying and cyberbullying are at an all-time high. An issue that used to exist primarily while kids were at school, has taken on new extremes with social media. There are staggering statistics such as 1 out of 4 teens are bullied; 43% of kids have been bullied while online; 1 in 4 have had it happen more than once. The intentional cruelty of bullying has become a far too common a story in the news. The writers and producers of ‘OLTL’ were profoundly affected by these devastating stories and made the decision to tell Shane’s story.”
“STOMP Out Bullying is delighted that ‘One Life to Live’ is putting the issue of bullying in the forefront. The hatred, cruelty and intolerance can no longer continue. By educating the public, we can stop the bullying BEFORE it ever starts. We are grateful to ‘One Life to Live’ for their partnership to help keep kids safe in schools and online,” states the group’s CEO Ross Ellis.
Anti-bullying PSA’s featuring John-Paul Lavoisier (Rex) and Farah Fath (Gigi) will air during the Monday, April 4 episode of “One Life to Live.”