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ThinkUKnow program recognised for raising awareness of online safety | #childsafety | #kids | #chldern | #parents | #schoolsafey


The AFP-led ThinkUKnow program has been recognised for its work in educating the community about online child sexual exploitation at the 2023 Australian Crime and Violence Prevention Awards (ACVPA).

It has received a bronze award in the police-led category, which recognises best practice in the prevention or reduction of violence and other types of crime in Australia.

ThinkUKnow was established in 2009 and is Australia’s first and only nationally-delivered, law enforcement-led online child safety program, supporting the critical work of the Australian Centre to Counter Child Exploitation (ACCCE).

The program is a partnership between the AFP, Commonwealth Bank, Datacom, Microsoft Australia, all state and territory police and Neighbourhood Watch Australasia.

The program relies on a team of over 1,000 volunteers to deliver educational presentations across the country to children, parents, carers and teachers about staying safe online.

 

 

AFP Assistant Commissioner Kirsty Schofield said the AFP was committed to preventing the exploitation of children and promoting early intervention through programs such as ThinkUKnow.

“The program is a long-standing primary prevention initiative and through it, we have seen the increased importance of collaboration between law enforcement and industry to keep children safe online,” Assistant Commissioner Schofield said.

“The AFP is proud that the program continues to be recognised for its importance in protecting our children online.

“If we can prevent even one child from falling victim to online child sexual exploitation, then all our presentations are worth it.”

The program incorporates up-to-date research, real case studies and examples from reports made to the ACCCE.

The program helps parents, carers and teachers get a better understanding of the types of things that children and young people SEE, SAY and DO online.

Online child sexual exploitation can be confronting and not something that you may have considered but education is key and the ThinkUKnow provides the resources to support the community navigate online challenges.

ThinkUKnow presentations can be booked by any school, organisation, community group, sporting club or other group. To book a presentation or for advice and support visit www.ThinkUKnow.org.au.

The AFP and its partners are committed to stopping child exploitation and abuse and the ACCCE is driving a collaborative national approach to combatting child abuse.

The ACCCE brings together specialist expertise and skills in a central hub, supporting investigations into online child sexual exploitation and developing prevention strategies focused on creating a safer online environment.

Members of the public who have information about people involved in child abuse are urged to contact the ACCCE at www.accce.gov.au/report. If you know abuse is happening right now or a child is at risk, call police immediately on 000.

If you or someone you know is impacted by child sexual abuse and online exploitation, support services are available at www.accce.gov.au/support.

Research conducted by the ACCCE in 2020 revealed only about half of parents talked to their children about online safety. Advice and support for parents and carers about how they can help protect children online can be found at www.thinkuknow.org.au, an AFP-led education program designed to prevent online child sexual exploitation.

For more information on the role of the ACCCE, what is online child sexual exploitation and how to report it visit www.accce.gov.au.

Note to media:

Use of term CHILD ABUSE MATERIAL not CHILD PORNOGRAPHY

The correct legal term is Child Abuse Material – the move to this wording was among amendments to Commonwealth legislation in 2019 to more accurately reflect the gravity of the crimes and the harm inflicted on victims.

Use of the phrase ‘child pornography’ is inaccurate and benefits child sex abusers because it:

  • indicates legitimacy and compliance on the part of the victim and therefore legality on the part of the abuser; and
  • conjures images of children posing in ‘provocative’ positions, rather than suffering horrific abuse.

Every photograph or video captures an actual situation where a child has been abused.

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