The Palaszczuk government will fund a full-time cyberbullying consultant for Parentline to provide more support to parents and carers who want to protect young people from online bullying.
Minister for Child Safety, Youth and Women Di Farmer said yourtown would receive $440,000 to employ a full-time consultant to 30 June 2023 to deliver the Parentline Cyberbullying Initiative.
“Parenting doesn’t come with a manual, and while parents know their children and can often pick up if something is wrong, they may not know how to respond if their child is experiencing cyberbullying,” Ms Farmer said.
“Parentline is the only service in Queensland that provides free professional and confidential counselling, education and support to parents and carers, no matter where they live, and having a full-time cyberbullying consultant will help strengthen the support they provide.
“Parents and carers will be able to call or email Parentline and get advice and information on how to deal with cyberbullying, as well as social media safety, addiction to technology and other technology-based issues to help keep children safe in our digital world.”
In addition to employing a full-time consultant, yourtown will train new and existing Parentline and Kids Helpline counsellors about the impact of cyberbullying and develop new resources for Queensland parents, schools and community organisations.
“yourtown will also deliver state-wide online information sessions, such as Facebook livestream, and tailored workshops in communities who want support in relation to specific incidents,” Ms Farmer said.
yourtown CEO Tracy Adams welcomed the funding as a way to further assist parents who might be struggling to support their children in today’s complex environment.
“Frequently parents share with us that they fear their children know more than they do about the online environment, and feel lacking when it comes to keeping pace with change or protecting their children from harm or from causing distress to others,” Ms Adams said.
“We also know from parents that it can be challenging to find information and resources to support them in that space.
“We will certainly be aiming to develop resources for parents and carers which really support them, whether they are delivered through our website, social platforms or face-to-face events.”
The funding supports one of the key recommendations from the Anti-Cyberbullying Taskforce which aims to support parents and carers to help prevent and manage cyberbullying behaviour.
Minister for Child Safety, Youth and Women and Minister for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence
The Honourable Di Farmer