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Children: Internet

Volume 488: debated on Wednesday 25 February 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether she plans to ensure that social networking sites act upon requests from adoptive parents and adoption agencies where they have a reasonable fear for the safety of the adopted child via such sites. (257324)

I have been asked to reply.

The Home Office Task Force on Child Protection on the Internet published good practice guidance for social networking sites last year. The guidance provides recommendations for how the managers of such sites should deal with incidents of bullying and other forms of abuse or threats to children’s safety, and to make it easy for all young people and their parents or guardians to report their concerns.

This guidance is being promoted by the newly formed UK Council for Child Internet Safety and has formed the core of the new European Agreement on Social Networking. Social networking sites are expected to inform the European Commission about their individual safety policies and how they will put these principles in place by April 2009.

The guidance may be downloaded from:

http://police.homeoffice.gov.uk/publications/operational-policing/social-networking-guidance/

A copy has been placed in the Libraries.