On Tuesday, Sept. 29, a new campaign led by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) and the White House was launched to keep kids safe online. The campaign is titled Safety Pledge. This campaign aims to provide free resources from the NCMEC to help parents, educators, and other caregivers learn more about the risks that -children face online and empower the -children in their lives to respond to those risks safely. Throughout COVID-19, NCMEC has witnessed dramatic increases in reports of child sexual exploitation to the cyber tip line and increased vulnerability of children. With many children being educated remotely this fall and using virtual devices for school lessons and social interactions, it is essential that we work together to help keep children safe online. The website -https://-safetypledge.org/ contains practical toolkits about internet safety. Under the “Take the Pledge” tab individuals can digitally sign and make their formal commitment to safeguarding children online.
In 2019, the Stearns County Sheriff’s Office nationally certified our response to missing, abducted, and sexually exploited children through NCMEC and the Missing Kids Readiness Program (MKRP). Our patrol division is one of four Minnesota patrol divisions certified through the MKRP. The Stearns County Sheriff’s Office is committed to collaborating with the NCMEC to keep our children safe.