Safer Internet Day to raise awareness vs. online child exploitation

By Benjamin Pulta

February 12, 2024, 5:52 pm

MANILA – The Department of Justice (DOJ) on Monday said this year's observance of Safer Internet Day (SID) will highlight efforts to raise awareness against child abuse and exploitation and the collective responsibility against the social ills.

“We’re bringing our campaign against human trafficking to the digital sphere through this initiative, dahil ang ating (because our) efforts to address this social ill ay hindi natatapos as long as may mga nais na manamantala (do not end as long as there are those who would want to take advantage),” Justice Undersecretary Nicholas Felix Ty said in a statement.

The National Coordination Center Against Online Sexual Abuse or Exploitation of Children and Child Sexual Abuse or Exploitation Materials (NCC-OSAEC-CSAEM), in partnership with Plan International Pilipinas and with the support of UNICEF Philippines, will take the lead in commemorating the SID 2024 on Tuesday.

The second Tuesday of February of every year is commemorated as “Safer Internet Day for Children Philippines” under Proclamation 417, signed by former president Rodrigo R. Duterte in 2018.

This year's theme “OSAEC at CSAEM ating sugpuin, implementasyon ng R.A. No. 11930 sama-samang patatagin!” aims to further raise public awareness on Republic Act 11930 or the Anti-Online Sexual Abuse and Exploitation of Children and Anti-Child Sexual Abuse or Exploitation Materials Act, as well as highlight, among others, the importance of child online safety and responsible internet use for the welfare of children.

RA 11930 was enacted to bolster the country’s efforts in addressing children's vulnerability to various forms of online abuse and exploitation.

Officials and representatives from the DOJ, Department of Social Welfare and Development, Plan International Pilipinas, and UNICEF Philippines, together with other NCC-OSAEC-CSAEM member-agencies, will facilitate the activities.

The primary audience for the first day of the SID are children and the youth, with ages ranging between 9 and 24 years; while the target audience on Wednesday are adults and child protection actors.

The NCC-OSAEC-CSAEM is a sub-structure of the Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking, with DOJ Secretary Jesus Crispin Remulla as chair and Ty as the Undersecretary-in-Charge. (PNA)