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ABEL was originally known as ELPPAB (East Lothian Parents and Pupils Against Bullying). ELPPAB evolved from a campaign pressure group founded by parents in 1997. They were at the time experiencing first hand the devastating effects bullying can have on a young person and their family. They worked voluntarily to increase awareness of bullying issues and provided a voice for families who were concerned about bullying in schools, community establishments and the wider community. They petitioned the local authority and the Scottish Executive for action to be taken to ensure that all young people were educated in as safe and positive environment as possible.

The parents worked in partnership with East Lothian Council to address parents and young people's concerns, and produced a consultation document, which was presented to Helen Liddell (Scottish Minister of Education 1999) At the meeting with Helen Liddell MSP, the need for advocacy for parents was raised and help was asked to setup ELPPAB as a pilot project providing Independent Advocacy for families within East Lothian. Funding for ELPPAB was granted from the Scottish Executive under ‘Supporting the Role of Parents’ element of the Excellence Fund awarded to East Lothian Council.

In January 2000 ELPPAB held its Inaugural General Meeting and by April 2000 a management committee had been elected and a constitution passed. ELPPAB was now recognised as a charitable organisation.

In October 2002, it was decided that the name ELPPAB should be changed. Although the spelling of ABEL(Anti bullying East Lothain) is different we do aim to empower pupils, parents and staff to become more able to make changes that will improve the quality of their lives. We also wanted to emphasise that the organisation was not part of East Lothian Council but in fact an independent organisation. It was therefore agreed that the name should be changed to ABEL.

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