Queensland is leading the anti-cyberbullying agenda nationally, making significant progress over the past 12 months to protect young Queenslanders from harm.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk tabled in Parliament today the Government’s second progress report on its implementation of the Queensland Anti-Cyberbullying Taskforce Report’s recommendations released in October 2018.
“Cyberbullying is a critical issue in our society. Its impact isn’t just inflicted on the person using the computer or phone. It’s a ripple effect reverberating through families, to next door neighbours and ultimately affecting entire communities,” the Premier said.
“That’s why there is not just one thing we can do to tackle this insidious problem, we have to do everything and we have to do it together.
“Last year, we established the Queensland Anti-Cyberbullying Taskforce – the first of its kind in Australia.
“We accepted all 29 of the Taskforce Report recommendations and announced $3.5 million in funding to tackle the issue, including:
- $2 million for awareness and education campaigns,
- $500,000 in grants to community organisations and young people
- $1 million for school-based initiatives, including $450,000 to Dolly’s Dream Foundation to partner with the Alannah and Madeline Foundation to implement the eSmart Schools Program.
The Premier said key actions to date have focused on strengthening support in schools, empowering young people and the community, and public awareness campaigns.
“We have now completed 19 of the 29 recommendations, and implementation of the remaining 10 recommendations is well underway, reinforcing the priority we place on protecting all children and young people from the devastating impacts of cyberbullying,” the Premier said.
“We’ve also allocated a further $1.2 million over four years to expand universal parenting supports, education programs and phone counselling services, and confirmed School Guidance Officers will continue to provide expert advice to schools.
“The eSmart Schools Program will be rolled out over three years from 2020 to ensure schools are equipped with evidence-based programs to tackle cyberbullying state-wide.
“We have also delivered the first round of the Tackle Cyberbullying Grants Program where young people and community organisations receive up to $5,000 each to deliver anti-cyberbullying projects across the state.”
Other key initiatives under way include:
- CONVO2019, a youth anti-bullying event held last month, which brought young people from diverse backgrounds together with social media company and support services representatives and social media influencers to workshop ideas
- an online portal to provide accessible information for parents, children and young people, carers and all members of the community with links to relevant services and agencies is now live: https://www.csyw.qld.gov.au/campaign/stop-cyberbullying; and
- the Queensland Police Service Operational Procedures Manual has been updated to ensure reports of cyberbullying are appropriately investigated.
The Premier said her government continues to take a lead role in the anti-cyberbullying agenda nationally and obtained agreement at the December 2018 COAG for the Federal Government to bring a proposal to introduce ‘right to be forgotten’ legislation.
“Over the coming year, we will build on this work at a State and national level and deliver all of the remaining Taskforce Report recommendations,” the Premier said.
“I would like to acknowledge the ongoing work of the Anti-Cyberbullying Advisory Committee Chaired by QUT legal academic Mr Peter Black.
“The Committee has met five times this year and provided crucial independent feedback and advice to Government agencies on implementation of Taskforce Report recommendations.
“While my Government has acted swiftly, the Taskforce Report highlighted the need for action by the whole community.
“While we keep working hard to implement all the recommendations, it is critical the whole community plays their part, and that we all work together to provide a safe online environment for our children and young people.”
The second progress report is available at https://www.premiers.qld.gov.au/publications/categories/reports/cyberbullying-gov-response.aspx
Premier and Minister for Trade
The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk