Using the full potential of web communication and online communities without experiencing the risks connected to improper or dangerous behaviors, for themselves and others. This is the objective of the workshop organized by the Postal Police within the Semester of the Italian Presidency of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, on the occasion of the European Day on the Protection of Children against Sexual Exploitation and Abuse.
The topical and urgent matter of the protection of minors is at the core of the Lanzarote Convention - signed on 25th October 2007 and implemented on 1st July 2010 – which commits the Member States of the Council of Europe to strengthen the protection of minors from sexual exploitation and abuse by adopting common criteria and measures for prevention, the prosecution of offenders and the protection of victims. Supporting this theme, the workshop held on 18th November has provided an additional element to the training course on safety and responsible use of the internet that the State Police are progressing on a daily basis, and for which collaboration with the Ministry of Education is essential.
Fifty thousand primary and secondary school students from 100 provincial capitals had the chance to learn more about web security with Postal Police Operators, engaging in a cross-generational conversation, leading to developing core competencies needed to be online with awareness. In fact, children and young people are using electronic devices at an ever-younger age and are becoming those most exposed to online threats and the risk of online grooming, especially in this period dominated by virtual interactions as a result of the pandemic. This is why it is crucial to support the emotional growth of the youngest children and the promote greater awareness amongst the older ones.
Developed around these goals, the event further blends in with the wide range of initiatives that Italy has chosen to dedicate to the protection of the rights of minors and adolescents, making this one of the three priority areas of intervention during the Semester of Presidency of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe.