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Protection of children online must be a top priority – Denise Mitchell TD

31 January, 2018 - by Denise Mitchell TD


Sinn Féin Spokesperson for Children and Youth Affairs Deputy Denise Mitchell has said the protection of children online must be a top priority for Government.

Speaking in the Dáil on the Harassment, Harmful Communications and Related Offences Bill, Deputy Mitchell said:

“Overall, when it comes to the area of harmful communications and digital safety, I fear we are falling way behind here in Ireland.

“Despite the work being done by the Gardaí, there is clearly frustration amongst the public who feel not enough is being done to tackle dangerous predators using the internet.

“Despite the work being done by the Gardaí, there is clearly frustration amongst the public who feel not enough is being done to tackle dangerous predators using the internet.

Deputy Mitchell said there is an urgent need for an Office of the Digital Safety Commissioner coupled with adequate resourcing:

“I don’t think anybody here is suggesting we become a nanny state, and while we should be focusing on engaging with social media companies and enforcing take-down requests and so on, the protection of children must be a top priority.

“We should also be about fostering a culture of responsible internet usage amongst the public, particularly young people - as well as educating people about how to use digital resources, apps and social media in an appropriate way as well as being aware of the potential dangers.”

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