With Jared Fogle, the Subway guy, this week admitting to luring and abusing minors — child abuse is on many people’s minds.
Heather Pocock is the assistant director of the Saskatoon Sexual Assault and Information Centre.
She said the centre doesn’t get a lot of kids coming in, but they do go to schools to educate kids and teachers around internet safety.
Pocock said the internet can be a problem because it’s a place where a stranger can get to know a child, and never meet face to face.
“Kids are vulnerable to becoming friends with people and sharing information and maybe putting themselves in a situation where they might be at risk without realizing what they’re doing.”
She said many kids now have personal devices like cell phones that can connect right to the internet.
According to Pocock, those who are most vulnerable are kids who are online all the time, and are lonely.
“Those are the real risk factors. If kids are isolated, or they just live on their cell phones, they have more opportunity to have people access them.”
“If kids are isolated, or they just live on their cell phones, they have more opportunity to have people access them.”- Heather Pocock
Pocock said the people at the center often don’t get to talk to parents, but when they do there are some safety tips they give.
“(Such as) making sure the computer is not alone with the child, you know, that they have it out in a public space.”