This section provides an Overview of Online Safeguarding, aiming to inform and support individuals and organisations in addressing those risks associated with the online world. The sections below each provide information as part of the overview with links to other related information on the site, which can be found at the bottom of the page.
Online Safeguarding, Online Safety, Digital Safety, e-Safety and Internet Safety are all terms used to varying extents to describe staying safe online. In recent years, the breadth and variety of issues has increased significantly and by its nature, is an agenda that will continue to evolve, none more so than the impact of Social Media. Specific risk areas within Online Safeguarding are varied and evolving and includes (but is not limited to) Online Child Sexual Exploitation, Bullying, Gaming, Sexting and Online Radicalisation amongst others.
Addressing potential issues around the online environment presents a variety of challenges for us. Whether we are Parents/Carers, Schools/Colleges, Youth Groups, Police, Local Authorities, Health professionals or any number of other individuals or organisation with an interest in keeping our Children and Young People safe online, it is key that we recognise that whatever particular risk area we are addressing, it remains a Safeguarding issue at its core. This is reflected in the definition of Online Safeguarding as:
"a Safeguarding issue where technology is involved"
Our approach ?
The online risks facing our Children and Young People do not conform to geographic boundaries and as such, it is evident that a collective approach across the wider Lancashire region is fundamental to achieving positive outcomes. To this end, the Blackpool, Lancashire and Blackburn with Darwen Local Safeguarding Children Boards endeavour to provide a collaborative Pan-Lancashire approach. In line with this approach, we have developed the Pan-Lancashire Online Safeguarding Strategy which provides a broad framework structure from within which we can ensure partners can collectively focus on the respective aspects whilst maintaining the ability to reflect local priorities and circumstances.
Pan-Lancashire Online Safeguarding Strategy
The Pan-Lancashire Online Safeguarding Strategy (see link below and right) provides a common framework for use across the children's workforce from which to address Online Safety in respective settings and organisations.
The Strategy sets out four overarching Strategic Objectives (Safer Management; Safer Access; Safer Learning; Safer Standards) in which each seek to focus on a specific aspect of provision. The Objectives are not mutually exclusive and specific actions or instances may link to, or support other objectives, particularly in relation to ensuring Safer Standards. You can find out more about this approach in the Schools & Children's Workforce section of the site.
Further information around implementing the Online Safeguarding Strategy can be found in the Schools & Children's Workforce section of the site. Additionally, the site provides a variety of discrete sections each with a specific focus.
We hope that you will find this a useful and valuable resource to support our Children and Young People to Stay Safe Online.