Across the world, COVID has, for better or worse, changed the way we do many things in our lives. Countless children have attended school, Sunday school and even 'camp' online this year. More than ever before, children live online - making new friends, developing established relationships, learn, recreate, etc.
With the added stressors COVID has brought, it is no surprise that child abuse has increased, in person and online. It is important that as adults we recognize the ways that children could be harmed online, do what we can to remove those threats, and minimize the impact when possible.
In collaboration, ISKCON's Ministry of Education, Child Protection Office North America, and Youth Ministry produced a set of recommendations for children's online safety. This is general information for parents, teachers, event organizers and management. It is by no means exhaustive but rather a starting point to create awareness. These recommendations contain links to other sources in order to enhance understanding of the issues. If we are able to receive support from experts in this field then we hope to issue further revisions to the document regularly. See Protecting Children Online here: https://iskconeducation.org/onlinechildsafety/ or http://www.safetemple.org/onlinesafety/
Parents, teachers and program organizers are requested to stay up to date with online risks and remain vigilant when providing minors usage of the internet. To protect the emotional, physical and spiritual well-being of children, arm yourself with knowledge.