11 MayMaintaining online safety and acting on family violence during COVID-19

Posted on 11 May 2020

The Commission for Children and Young People has resources to help your organisation meet its Child Safe Standards obligations including keeping children safe online during COVID-19 and acting on family violence.

Keeping children safe online

If your organisation is using online learning resources and channels more frequently, such as when conducting remote learning you need to  make sure you have addressed the Child Safe Standards by identifying risks of child abuse in your online platforms and document how you will manage these risks.

The Commission has published some new information to assist organisations better understand and manage the risks of child abuse in the online environment.

The eSafety Commissioner also has a range of resources for educators, parents and carers to help keep children safe online, particularly during this period.

Maintaining wellbeing and acting on family violence

The social, economic psychological impact of COVID-19 and the associated measures to mitigate its effect such as social distancing, stay-at-home orders and commercial and entertainment shutdown has strong potential to create additional stress and anxiety, which may impact people’s wellbeing and increase instances of family violence.

If you suspect that a child, or any person, is being abused or may be in immediate danger, you should call ‘000’ immediately and report the matter to Victoria Police.

Where you are concerned a child is in need of protection, you can report to Child Protection via this link

Other support services that continue to operate include:

Family violence support

Orange Door is operating during COVID-19 and provides free services for children and young people as well as adults, who are experiencing or have experienced family violence.

Domestic Violence Resource Centre Victoria provides information, advice, resources and responses to frequently asked questions on COVID-19 and family violence.

Call 1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732) or visit the1800 RESPECT website for a list of safety apps for mobile phones.

The Safe Steps 24/7 family violence crisis response phone lines are operating as usual on 1800 015 188.

Support for children and young people

Kids helpline provides 24/7 support to children and young people on 1800 55 1800 and via email or web chat. Kids helpline provides information for children and young people about looking after mental health during COVID-19.

Headspace and ReachOut provide information for children and young people about coping with stress related to COVID-19.

Mental health support

Beyond Blue has produced a guide to mental wellbeing during the Coronavirus outbreak. The Beyond Blue Support Service offers short-term counselling and referrals by phone and web chat on 1300 22 4636.

Lifeline is available 24 hours/7 days on 13 11 14, by text to 0477 13 11 14 (6pm – midnight AEDT, 7 nights) and online chat (7pm – midnight, 7 nights).

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