Experts stress importance of communication with kids and online safety

By: Sophia Hernandez | WCTV Eyewitness News
January 17, 2019

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- In an age full of computers and cellphones, the safety of our children is a bigger concern now more than ever.

Parents of students at Roberts Elementary School gathered Thursday evening during a PTO meeting, discussing online safety.

"It is hard to stay on top of it, especially with the kids who are so much more savvy than we are as parents," one parent said, expressing how important conversations are with her children about everyday life and the use of technology. "We wanna just stay on top of it and keep them safe and make sure that we got the right things in place to keep them from going where they shouldn't go."

Children now have access to messaging and social media, sometimes without parental supervision.

Mental health counselor Kenneth Fowler says that children, now more than ever, feel a certain pressure to not shy from their friends when uncomfortable.

"Kids are really concerned about people seeing them a certain way, their peer groups shunning them and those kind of things," Fowler explained.

Fowler also mentioned that children's wanting to be liked can keep them from being open and honest.

Victim advocate Loris McCorvey agrees, stating that communication is key.

"Make sure you tell your teacher or tell an authority. If that person doesn't listen, then go to the next person. Keep telling your story until you get the help you need," expressed McCorvey.

Proving that the tried and true, "See something, say something," is more important now than ever.

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