The Cyber- Bullying Epidemic

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1 8/31/15 The Cyber- Bullying Epidemic LCA 2015 Pre-Conference September 26, 2015 Kellie Giorgio Camelford, Ph.D., LPC-S, NCC Thrive Counseling Center LLC Agenda Quiz on Cyberbullying Knowledge: o Define CyberBullying o Statistics on CyberBullying o Famous Court Cases & Laws in LA Resources: o School Counseling o Individual Therapy 1

2 Knowledge What is Cyberbullying? Statistics of Cyberbullying Amendments & Court Cases Laws in Louisiana Cyberbullying Quiz 5 Defining Cyberbullying A situation in which someone intentionally and repeatedly harasses, makes fun of, or mistreats another person on social media sites, through text messages, or in other ways online o Intentional o Harmful o Repeated o Online or electronic 2

3 Bullying vs. Cyber- bullying Footer Text 8/26/15 8 Footer Text 8/26/15 9 3

4 Footer Text 8/26/

5 Warning Signs of Cyberbullying Victims: o Anxiety when , IM, tweet appears o Appears upset after electronic usage o Withdrawn Offenders: o Hides of closes computer screen from others o Displays excessive laughter while using electronic devices o Does not want to discuss electronic usage 14 Risk Factors of Cyberbullying High internet or cell phone use Sharing passwords Reduced face-to-face interactions Bullied at school Verbal / physical agression at school 15 5

6 Effects of Cyberbullying Use alcohol and drugs Skip school Experience in-person bullying Unwilling to attend school Receive poor grades Lower self-esteem Depression Anxiety Suicidal thoughts 16 Statistics Approximately 34% of students report experiencing cyberbullying in their lifetimes Mean or hurtful comments (12.8%) and Rumor spreading (19.4%) are the most commonly cited forms of cyberbullying. Adolescent girls are significantly more likely to have experienced cyberbullying (40.6% v. 28.2%) 72% of participants, ages 12-17, claimed they knew who was doing the cyberbullying 17% of students admitted to researchers that they had cyberbullied someone else Cyberbullying and Laws Many laws require public schools to develop policies prohibiting cyberbullying and cyberharassment Some laws authorize discipline ranging from suspension to expulsion Other laws require reporting incidents to law enforcement officials 6

7 Amendments & Cyberbullying First Amendment o Freedom of speech o Doesn t give the right to threaten, harass, or intimidate someone Fourth Amendment o Unreasonable searches and seizures o Probable cause o Educators don t have to follow all the same rules that police do Federal Laws Protecting Children in the 21 st Century Act (also known as the Broadband Data Improvement Act) Communications Decency Act Interstate Communications Law All speech is not protected: lewd and obscene speech, speech that is profane, libelous speech, and insulting or fighting words Cyberbullying in Louisiana Cyberbullying can be charged under the state cyberbullying law when a bully (the defendant) uses an electronic device (such as a cell phone or a computer) to send a written, spoken, or visual communication to someone younger than 18 years old with the intent to abuse, scare, or intimidate that person. (14 La. Stat. Ann ) 7

8 Cyberbullying in Louisiana More serious instances of cyberbullying can be charged as stalking if the defendant s behavior included two or more harassing actions that would have made a reasonable person feel alarmed or emotionally distressed. And more serious penalties apply to offenses that cause the victim to fear bodily injury or death, or when the victim was younger than 18 years old. (14 La. Stat. Ann ) Cyberbullying in Louisiana Cyberbullying may also be prosecuted under Louisiana s cyberstalking law. This occurs when the offensive behavior occurred in an electronic format to threaten bodily harm upon the victim (or a victim s family member), to extort money from the victim, repeatedly communicate for the purposes of harassing the victim, and other similar specified actions. (14 La. Stat. Ann ) Civil Lawsuits The consequences of cyberbullying depend heavily on the circumstances of the offense. Sometimes an incident may be settled under school policy, but more serious cases often land in criminal court. A victim may sometimes bring a civil action against a bully for the emotional, social, or financial harm caused by cyberbullying. In civil court, a judge may award money damages to be paid to the victim, for example to offset the cost of therapy for the emotional trauma that the bully caused the victim, or to pay for property damage caused by the crime. 8

9 GeWing Teens to Rethink Cyberbullying According to ikeepsafe.org, teens might understand the impact of a nasty text message upon its recipient, the part of their brain that should be warning Don t hit send isn t fully operational yet Adolescent brain is like a car with a fully functioning gas pedal (the reward system) but weak brakes (prefrontal cortex). We can t make adolescents brains mature faster, so we need to consider being proactive rather than reactive Break 15 minutes Resources School Counseling Individual Counseling 9

10 Solutions Decision Making Skills Proactive, THINK BEFORE YOU POST Educate Don t Stay Silent Don t Respond Report Cyberbullying Tell an adult Unfriend / block 28 Cyberbullying Prevention Tips for Schools Assess cyberbullying at your institution Create a team Educate the community Establish policies Promote online safety Encourage reporting Set an example Peer mentoring Be vigilant Student Activities Book Club o Words Wound Anti-Bullying Week with Anti-Cyberbullying Day Poetry/ Art/ Short Story Competitions Peer Mentors Support Group Group Guidance o Case studies / Skits o Videos o Common Sense Toolkit Friday Night Lights Clips Blended Curriculum o Cyberbullying: Effects on Teens Across the Nation (Social Studies and Language Arts) Group Discussion o See next slides for questions 10

11 Discussion Questions for Students How do you define cyberbullying? What are the consequences of cyberbullying? Do you know someone who has been targeted? If so, how did it make that person feel? Why do you think adults have an inaccurate perception of the amount of cyberbullying going on? Who do you turn to when you need help? What could the people in your life do to make it more likely that you would turn to them if you were being cyberbullied? Discussion Questions for Students What are effective ways to respond to cyberbullying? How would you respond to a friend who confides in you that she is being cyberbullied? What have you done when you ve seen cyberbullying occur? Why do you think people don t report cyberbullying? Have you every posted something when you were angry or upset? What happened? What could you have done instead of angry posting? At what point does a comment cross the line into being hurtful? 11

12 Helpful Apps / Software ReThink: hwp://abcnews.go.com/gma/video/app- rethink- prevent- cyberbullying Intervention Methods Immediately responding when cyberbullying takes place Saving evidence Assessing the problem Determining consequences Reporting to the police harmful online speech, harassment, stalking, or violent threats Informing the perpetrator s family to establish consistency in home and school expectations Intervention Methods Providing social skills to perpetrators Informing mental health professionals to assist the victims and their families in coping with the incident Meet with families of those involved 12

13 Individual Counseling Interventions Journaling Report it Assess underlying issues Self harm and / or suicide assessment General Counseling Help the victim cope with the trauma of cyberbullying Rehabilitate the cyberbully Group Counseling Individual Counseling Interventions Solution-focused approach: Identify emotions / problems Miracle question Synthesize / educate Instill coping strategies / strengths / exceptions Offer feedback Psycho-ed / Teach skills: Impulse control Anger management skills Feelings expression Assertiveness skills Socialization skills Improving self-concept Stages of grief: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance Counseling Activities Color/Depict Your Emotions Home, School, Online Use markers/ colors/ collages to describe how you feel at each location Word Play: Power, Revenge, Attention, Inadequacy Have client define these words Match earlier activity to these 4 words Crucial C s: Courage Count Capable Connected Source: hwps:// source/vistas/empowering- cyberbullied- youth- a- solution- focused- adlerian- counseling- model.pdf? sfvrsn=4 13

14 Parent Tips Save the evidence Block offending addresses and cell phone numbers Change child s address or cell number Report to school and police, if necessary Report to services, internet providers, websites, social media, etc. Resources Handout Discussion & Q and A 14

15 Thank You KELLIE GIORGIO CAMELFORD, Ph.D., LPC-S, NCC THRIVE COUNSELING CENTER LLC 6660 RIVERSIDE DRIVE, SUITE 202 METAIRIE, LA

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