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Press Room

For Immediate Release: May 12, 2009

Attorneys General Convene To Discuss Kids And Cyberbullying, Sexting, Sexual Predators, Social Networks, And E-Safety

Summit Focus is Safe Use of Online Technology for Children

Philadelphia, PA---The National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG) President and Rhode Island Attorney General Patrick C. Lynch and Pennsylvania Attorney General Tom Corbett today are hosting state Attorneys General, corporate and association representatives and other stakeholders in a two-day summit in Philadelphia that will address strategies to empower children and their parents on the safe use of online technology. The NAAG Presidential Initiative Summit, “The Year of the Child: Protecting and Empowering the Next Generation” runs today and tomorrow at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel. One critical role and responsibility of Attorneys General is pursuing and arresting sexual predators who use new technologies to prey on children.

“While the Internet offers our children greater knowledge of our world, it also exposes them to danger from harmful influences, and from individuals who seek to take advantage of them, and hurt them,” said President Lynch, who made this topic the focus of his one-year NAAG presidential term. “Our goal is to better educate, engage, enlighten, and empower children and their parents in the safe use of online technology.”

The summit will provide an overview of the latest developments, research, and future action steps on keeping children safe while online. Topics of discussion include MySpace and Facebook updates, cyberbullying, the dangers of peer to peer file sharing networks and current trends in online safety technology.

Guest speakers include Rear Admiral Steven K. Galson, MD, MPH, acting surgeon general for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; Ernie Allen, president and chief executive officer of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children; David Finklehor, director of Crimes Against Children Research Center and co-director of Family Center Research Center at the University of New Hampshire; and Ed Smart, father of Elizabeth Smart on behalf of radKIDS®.

President Lynch said, “As the chief legal officers in our jurisdictions, we must continue to push for legislation, prosecute Internet predators, and work with social networking sites to ensure the safety of children.”

Other summit highlights include: “Digital Natives: Growing Up in an Electronic World", "The Megan Meier Suicide Case: Case Study and Resulting State Legislation", and The Alicia Project. For a copy of the agenda, visit www.naag.org.

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The National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG) was founded in 1907 to help Attorneys General fulfill the responsibilities of their office and to assist in the delivery of high quality legal services to the states and territorial jurisdictions

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