Jermaine Jenas, Myleene Klass, Georgia Kousoulou amongst public figures backing Online Safety Bill

A number of high profile public figures including Jermaine Jenas, Myleene Klass, Georgia Kousoulou, Jo Frost and Laura Amies have today backed the government’s Online Safety Bill in the week the landmark internet safety laws returned to Parliament.

It comes as the government releases latest findings from a survey by Ipsos revealing that more than 70% of adults in the UK think social media platforms should be doing more to protect children online.

The new data coincides with the return of the Online Safety Bill to Parliament this week, following the announcement of vital new provisions.

This includes greater accountability on larger tech companies to protect young people, including requiring them to publish a summary of their risk assessments concerning the dangers their platform poses to children, alongside moves to boost transparency and accountability through new powers for the regulator Ofcom.

Ipsos research also found that 69% of people believe that children are not safe when using social media, with 77% of adults worried about children seeing content promoting self harm.

The draft legislation will go further than before to shield children, whilst protecting free speech. The Online Safety Bill has significant public backing, with more high profile public figures today backing it – from former England footballer Jermaine Jenas to global parenting expert Jo Frost.

This follows confirmation that the Bill will also include new measures to make significant changes to the UK’s criminal law to increase protections for vulnerable people online by criminalising the encouragement of self-harm and the sharing of people’s intimate images without their consent.

Former England footballer, broadcaster and parent, Jermaine Jenas says:

“Our support for the landmark Online Safety Bill is so important in ensuring tech companies clamp down on harmful content that can be accessed by children online. As a parent myself, I am keen to ensure that my kids are able to use the internet safely. The Online Safety Bill is a step in the right direction.”

Musician and mum, Myleene Klass says:

“These new internet safety laws are incredibly important to protecting children and young people online. We are all aware of the harmful content that is available online and shared across social media platforms.

“These new safety laws put more responsibility on social media platforms to ensure the removal of this content and enforce them to actually stop underage children from accessing content they shouldn’t be. We need to ensure our children feel empowered, supportive and safe online.”

TV personality and mother, Georgia Kousoulou says:

“As a mum, I’m already thinking about how I will help Brody navigate the online world. I’ve experienced first hand how harmful and damaging online content can be and the online safety bill is so important in preventing this.

“It will hold technology companies accountable for harmful content they are allowing children to see online. I am looking forward to seeing this legislation passed and the effect this will have to make the online world a safer place for everyone.”

Global parenting expert Jo Frost (‘Super Nanny’), says:

“While we understand the importance of protecting our children in the physical world, we must also be sure to recognise the equal importance of keeping our children safe online in the virtual world too.

“This is the reason why with urgency we must all come together in strength to support these new internet safety laws to ensure that social media companies are held more accountable for the content children access on their platforms.”

Child behaviour expert Laura Amies (‘The Toddler Tamer’ from Channel 5’s Toddlers Behaving (Very) Badly), says:

“Given that children learn so much from their environment, those within it and the experiences they have, I believe that it is now more important than ever to do all we can to ensure their safety online.

“As an adult who spends a great deal of my time online, social media in particular, I can not imagine trying to navigate the internet throughout my most formative years and often say how grateful I am to have attended school without a smart phone in my school bag.

“As adults however, it is our responsibility to ensure that we keep online safety at the forefront in a bid to both protect and be able to benefit from the infinite positives that the internet has to offer us.”

The Online Safety Bill returned to Parliament on 5 December in the House of Commons for Report stage.