WINNIPEG, MB: From being lured or targeted online for a sexual purpose, to the creation and sharing of sexual images/videos that can result in cyberbullying among peers, young people are faced with navigating and building relationships within a fully integrated technological world. While adolescence is a time filled with great opportunity, it is also a time of increased risk – growing up today can be challenging. On February 10, 2015, International Safer Internet Day, the Canadian Centre for Child Protection is highlighting new educational properties that address emerging issues facing youth and encouraging parents and teachers to visit saferinternetday.ca to access important safety resources that reduce child victimization online.
The Canadian Centre for Child Protection (Canadian Centre), a national charitable organization dedicated to the personal safety of all children and youth, offers a number of age-specific Internet safety resources. This year, the Canadian Centre is promoting new booklets to help address the vulnerability of adolescents to sexual victimization. What’s the Deal? for Grades 7/8 and It is a Big Deal for Grades 9/10 activity books are intended to help young people to identify healthy versus unhealthy relationships, boundaries, how attitudes and beliefs can contribute to sexual violence, what constitutes sexual consent and what does not, and how to respond to unsafe situations by going to a safe adult. For parents/guardians, the Canadian Centre is also promoting the Keeping Teens Safe from Online Sexual Exploitation booklet and the Smartphone Safety booklet.
“In the last few years, the issue of adolescent sexual victimization has become a growing concern for parents and school personnel across Canada,” says Signy Arnason, Director of Cybertip.ca. “Our new education modules and accompanying activity books empower youth to choose their own path, by teaching them about healthy relationships, boundaries, consent and who to go to if they need help.”
To help youth navigate their online world in a safer way and give schools and families the tools to support them, the Canadian Centre, as part of this year’s Safer Internet Day, will be distributing approximately one million Internet safety materials to schools across Canada free of charge. Parents and teachers can also access age-specific Internet safety information by visiting saferinternetday.ca. Parents, and others, are also encouraged to sign up for Cybertip.ca ALERTS – a notification system that offers vital information to the public concerning technology trends and new resources designed to increase children’s and teens’ personal safety. Visit Cybertip.ca to sign up today.