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Police turn mouseketeers to promote e-safety

Pcso Chris Warlow with young people at the Disney Store learning about e-safety

The Mickey Mouse club gained a few uniformed cast members last weekend when South Wales Police became e-safety Mouseketeers!

As part of the Child Exploitation and Online Protection (CEOP) Centre ‘Thinkuknow’ education programme, School Community Police Officers spent the day at the Disney shop in Cardiff promoting e-safety messages to parents, guardians, carers and children.

CEOP factsheets about cyber-bullying, grooming, and inappropriate websites were distributed, as well as a checklist for parents to follow to protect children and reduce the risks online.
Officers also helped the children to make friendship bracelets, encouraging them to be a ‘good internet friend’ and to pass them on to a friend with the online safety lessons they had learnt in store.

School Community PC Chris Warlow said: “For some parents the extent to which children use the internet in their daily lives can seem daunting. It’s important that both parents and children know what can happen online and how to report anything inappropriate.
“Coming to the Disney store gave us the opportunity to speak to parents and children together and give advice in a friendly environment.
“Our key message to parents was to take steps to understand how your child uses the internet - have conversations about their online friends, find out what sites they visit, and encourage them to tell you if they are worried about something online.”
CEOP, Disney and South Wales Police teamed up in support of Safer Internet Day on Tuesday 5th February.
This year marks the tenth anniversary of Safer Internet Day, and the theme is ‘Connect with Respect’ and online rights and responsibilities.

Linda Roberts, National Coordinator of the All Wales School Liaison Core Programme at South Wales Police said: “E-safety is one of many topics covered by School Community Police Officers in primary and secondary schools as part of the All Wales School Liaison Core Programme.

Jonathan Baggaley, CEOP’s Head of Education, added: “At CEOP, our work focuses on protecting children: we want every parent and child in the UK to know how to stay safe on and offline. Children are increasingly digitally aware nowadays, often leaving their parents struggling to keep up and Safer Internet Day provides a very timely reminder of the need to know how to stay safe online.
“Our partnership with Disney and South Wales Police allows us to bring our message to a wider audience and we are delighted to have had the opportunity to help parents and young people connect with respect and be good online friends.”

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