The S-press And Headspace Cyber Bullying Initiative

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15th October 2009, 01:05pm - Views: 903
The S-press and Headspace Cyber Bullying Initiative

MEDIA RELEASE

Thursday, OCTOBER 15, 2009

S-press newspaper has joined forces with headspace, the National Youth Mental Health Foundation, to launch The S-press and headspace Cyber Bullying Initiative.

The Cyber Bullying Initiative is a 12-month campaign to address and combat the growing incidence of online bullying. In fact, 31 per cent of 14-17 year olds have reported that they have been cyber bullied, as have 21 per cent of 10-13 year olds.[1]

Many young Australians are having a tough time as a result of cyber bullying. Bullying is not new, but some features of cyber bullying are different from other forms of bullying. Obviously, the viral nature of technology can lead to extremely negative outcomes for both the young person and their family and friends.

"Cyber bullying can happen to anyone. It can be upsetting and stressful, impacting on different areas of a young person's life including self-esteem, relationships, work or study," said headspace CEO, Mr Chris Tanti. "Both State and Federal Governments have shown leadership in introducing programs to help combat cyber bullying. We are keen to build on this by having a dialogue with young people about the impact of bullying on their health and wellbeing," he said.

Cyber bullying is not limited to mobile phones and social networking sites such as Facebook and MySpace. Young people are also reporting being bullied via gaming sites, virtual worlds and other 'fun' online activities. This can include name-calling, making abusive or derogatory remarks and players picking on weaker or less experienced users.

National teen newspaper, S-press has partnered with headspace to provide critical information, advice and assistance to young Australians who may experience cyber bullying. S-press Managing Editor Grant Quarry said, "We were surprised to learn that, unfortunately, it's not uncommon for a young person to be a victim of cyber bullying. And the impact on their mental health and wellbeing is significant."

"That's why, given our broad national readership and penetration, we at S-press believe we are in a unique position to provide information and advice to students - the sort of advice an organisation like headspace is perfectly geared to provide."

"Each month we'll be looking at different components of cyber bullying, including everything from tips, hints and ways to help prevent being cyber bullied and how you can help a help a friend who is experiencing cyber bullying, to the different types and methods of bullying and how to report cyber bullying.

"We'll also recount young people's experiences involving cyber bullying, look at how you should respond if you're being cyber bullied and, importantly, where the law stands on this issue," Mr Quarry said.

S-press and headspace believe that this initiative will be another valuable mechanism to ensure that young people receive the message that help and support is available.

headspace provides mental and health wellbeing support, information and services to young people and their families across Australia. See www.headspace.org.au for more details.

S-press is the only full colour national newspaper produced for teenagers in Australia. With 95,000 copies printed each month and distributed into 99 per cent of the nation's high schools, it covers every aspect of teen life from
news, sport, education and careers, to social events, entertainment and fashion. For more details, check out www.tempomedia.com.au

Media interviews: S-press - Grant Quarry, 03 9421 4499 / headspace - Maree Sidey, 0417 385 208

[1] http://www.microsoft.com/australia/presspass/news/pressreleases/Cyberbullying_Galaxy_Research_Release.mspx


SOURCE: headspace




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