BLOOMINGDALE, Ill. – In recognition of April being Child Abuse Prevention Month, state Rep. Diane Pappas, D-Itasca, is highlighting the importance of digital media safety during the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak.
“As a result of this unprecedented health crisis, young people have greater exposure to digital communication, and they need to have knowledge about how to stay safe online,” said Pappas. “I encourage parents to talk to their children about digital communication safety.”
Pappas is promoting resources to help ensure the safety of young people in digital spaces. The proliferation of video conferencing and social media can bring added risks to children and teens, as online predators have used these apps to target them. If you or someone you know is in need of help, the following resources are available to help parents offer compassionate guidance for their kids:
- The Stop It Now Helpline at 888-PREVENT (888-773-8368) or at stopitnow.org
- The Center for Prevention of Abuse at 800-559-SAFE (800-559-7233)
- The National Sexual Assault Hotline at 800-656-HOPE (800-656-4673) or with online chat service at www.hotline.rainn.org
“These services can support parents who may find this subject matter difficult to discuss with their children,” Pappas said. “Knowledge is power, and arming families with this information will help keep our children safe.”
Residents can stay informed on developments with the COVID-19 pandemic by reviewing the State of Illinois website at www.coronavirus.illinois.gov. Pappas encourages residents who need help navigating services to contact her district office at 224-520-8838 or RepDPappas@gmail.com.