ALBANY, NY – A bill to combat cyberbullying is heading to the Governor after passing through the New York State legislature this week.
Our Capitol Correspondent Corina Cappabianca breaks down the legislation and has more from advocates who say the issue has been heightened as kids spend more time on screens.
((Angelo Santabarbara, NYS Assemblymember)) I think the COVID pandemic has taught us a lot. Certainly, it has increased the use of technology. We see more students, more kids going on their computers.
New York State United Teachers President Andy Pallotta says cyber-bullying has been and continues to be an issue.
((Andy Pallotta, NYSUT President)) We’ve been fighting for more social workers, psychologists, mental health care givers, for a long time.
To address the issue lawmakers have voted to create a cyberbullying task force with nine members.
Five would be selected by the Governor, two from the Senate Majority Leader and two from the Assembly Speaker.
((Angelo Santabarbara, NYS Assemblymember)) We’re legislators, we have all different backgrounds, but maybe not necessarily in what these members are going to represent in child psychology, technology, law enforcement, mental health, social services.
Santabarbara says there are a few goals for the group.
((Angelo Santabarbara, NYS Assemblymember)) I think there will be multiple recommendations, will certainly turn into further legislation, but it also may point to maybe we need to invest more funding in certain areas.
The task force report will be due by July 1st, 2023.