West Lancashire MP Rosie Cooper says online safety is a real issue and parents need to be at the forefront of making sure children and young people are kept safe online.
MP Rosie joined with more than 1,000 schools, charities, and businesses to pledge their support for making the internet a safer place for children and young people.
Safer Internet Day is a globally recognised celebration promoting the safe and positive use of digital technology for children and young people.
The event in Parliament, coordinated in the UK by the UK Safer Internet Centre (UK SIC), is celebrated in over a hundred countries.
New research by the UK SIC reveals the internet is a fundamental part of young people’s identity, and that online experiences are an essential part of who they are offline, with 38% saying it’s easier to be themselves online than offline.
But, despite the positives the internet can bring, there are downsides too.
UK SIC found a quarter (25%) of 13-17-year olds say they have been targeted with online hate in the last month because of their gender, sexuality, race, religion, disability or gender identity, with 45% of disabled teens and 32% of BAME teens reporting this.
According to the research 62% of children aged 8 to 17 years old have said they are more careful about what they share online because of people being mean based on who they are.
Rosie Cooper MP welcomed the work being done by the UK Safer Internet Centre and called for everyone to play their part in making sure children and young people are safe online, she said:
“Internet Safety Day is a fantastic initiative. The internet is a great tool for both parents and children but it is important that parents feel safe about what their children are able to do online.
“I’m delighted to support the Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) and its partners in this campaign.
“It isn’t about censorship but about sitting down as a family and talking about how to stay safe online, what websites are suitable viewing and how to tackle issues such as cyber-bullying.”
A spokesperson for the UK Safer Internet Centre said:
“It is vital that we reach as many children and their parents and carers as possible.
“Safer Internet Day engages over 1,000 organisations to encourage them to have a conversation about their online safety.
“The UK Safer Internet Centre provides support and advice to children, parents and professionals working with children all year round. It is essential that policy makers are aware of the challenges that children face online and that is why we hosted today’s drop-in session in Parliament.”
MP Rosie urged constituents who are concerned about online safety to visit https://www.saferinternet.org.uk/safer-internet-day/2020
The UK Safer Internet Centre is a partnership of three leading charities – Childnet, Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) and South West Grid for Learning (SWGfL) – with a shared mission to make the internet a better place for children and young people.
The partnership was appointed by the European Commission as the Safer Internet Centre for the UK in January 2011 and is one of the 31 Safer Internet Centres of the Insafe network.
Internet Watch Foundation
What we do:
We make the internet a safer place. We help victims of child sexual abuse worldwide by identifying and removing online images and videos of their abuse. We search for child sexual abuse images and videos and offer a place for the public to report them anonymously. We then have them removed. We’re a not for profit organisation and are supported by the global internet industry and the European Commission.
For more information please visit www.iwf.org.uk.
The IWF works globally to stop child sexual abuse imagery on the internet. If you ever stumble across a sexual image or video of someone you think is under 18, please report to the IWF. Reporting can be done anonymously and confidentially – we don’t need your details, just your help.