This policy should be read alongside OYCI policies and procedures on child protection and safeguarding. More information about safeguarding and child protection can be found at

The purpose of this policy statement is to:

  • Ensure the safety and wellbeing of children and young people using the internet, social media or mobile devices as part of OYCI activity
  • Provide staff and volunteers with the overarching principles that guide our approach to online safety
  • Ensure that, as an organisation, we operate in line with our values and within the law in terms of how we use online devices.

The policy statement applies to all staff, volunteers, children and young people and anyone involved in OYCI activities.

We believe that:

  • children and young people should never experience abuse of any kind
  • children and young people should be able to use the internet for education and personal development, but safeguards need to be in place to ensure they are kept safe at all times.

We recognise that:

  • the online world provides everyone with many opportunities; however it can also present risks and challenges
  • we have a duty to ensure that all children, young people and adults involved in our organisation are protected from potential harm online
  • we have a responsibility to help keep children and young people safe online
  • all children, regardless of age, disability, gender reassignment, race, religion or belief, sex or sexual orientation, have the right to equal protection from all types of harm or abuse
  • working in partnership with children, young people, their parents, carers and other agencies is essential in promoting young people’s welfare and in helping young people to be responsible in their approach to online safety

We will seek to keep children and young people safe by:

  • appointing an online safety coordinator or manager (this may or may not be the same person as your nominated child protection lead)
  • providing clear and specific directions to staff and volunteers on how to behave online through our code of conduct
  • supporting and encouraging the young people using our service to use the internet, social media and mobile phones in a way that keeps them safe and shows respect for others
  • developing clear and robust procedures to enable us to respond appropriately to any incidents of inappropriate online behaviour, whether by an adult or a child/young person
  • reviewing and updating the security of our information systems regularly
  • ensuring that user-names, logins, email accounts and passwords are used effectively
  • ensuring personal information about the adults, children and young people who are involved in our organisation is held securely and shared only as appropriate
  • ensuring that images of children, young people and families are used only after their permission has been obtained, and only for the purpose for which consent has been given
  • providing supervision, support and training for staff and volunteers about online safety
  • examining and risk assessing any social media platforms and new technologies before they are used within the organization

If online abuse occurs, we will respond to it by:

  • having clear and robust safeguarding procedures in place for responding to abuse (including online abuse) – please see our child protection policy
  • providing support and training for all staff and volunteers on dealing with all forms of abuse

This policy statement should be read alongside our organisational policies and procedures, including:

  • Child protection
  • Code of conduct for staff and volunteers
  • Anti-bullying policy

This policy statement should be read alongside our organisational policies and procedures, including:

  • Child protection
  • Code of conduct for staff and volunteers
  • Anti-bullying policy

Updated: February 2022

We support the rights, opportunities and full participation of young people, giving them things to do and safe spaces to have fun and develop friendships, skills and confidence. 

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