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Call to report cyber-bullying

DON’T BE SILENT: Sen Const Laleynya Ryan with Southern Cross School K-12 students Erin Copeland, Keira Chapman and Jack Hawkins at the Wellbeing Expo which featured a presentation on cyber bullying.
DON’T BE SILENT: Sen Const Laleynya Ryan with Southern Cross School K-12 students Erin Copeland, Keira Chapman and Jack Hawkins at the Wellbeing Expo which featured a presentation on cyber bullying. Graham Broadhead

THE simple message to teens is to report cyber-bullying.

Richmond Local Area Command crime prevention office Senior Constable Laleynya Ryan was spreading that message at the inaugural Wellbeing Expo organised by and hosted at East Ballina's Southern Cross School K-12.

Snr Const Ryan said she aimed to encourage kids who were being cyber-bullied to "stand up if you or a friend is suffering".

"Don't live in silence," she said.

She said schoolteachers were likely to be the first point of contact for students being cyber-bullied.

She showed a presentation prepared by the Australian Federal Police to community members and students at the expo which showed social media platforms on the internet.

Several students could identify Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and Snapchat, there were others including Tumblr, Flickr and Tinder.

Snr Const Ryan said social media was not going away, but emphasised it did have positive applications.

She warned students - and their parents - to be conscious of their privacy settings on social media platforms and also to be careful what they put online.

Southern Cross School K-12 English teacher Sandra Rosner organised the event which she hoped will be held annually.

It's inspired by a similar expo at Kingscliff.

The aim, she said, was to show students and their families what kind of supports existed for children, particularly those in crisis.

"Youth suicide needs to be talked about in this country," Ms Rosner said.

Topics:  cyber bullying



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