NEWS
11/13/2015 13:18 EST | Updated 11/13/2016 00:12 EST

Cyberbullying must be part of B.C. curriculum, teacher development: report

VANCOUVER — British Columbia's privacy and children's watchdogs are urging the province to make cyberbullying education a mandatory part of the school curriculum and teacher development.

Privacy commissioner Elizabeth Denham and children's representative Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond have submitted a joint report to the B.C. legislature calling for a co-ordinated strategy to prevent cyberbullying.

The report says high-profile suicides of Canadian teenagers, including Amanda Todd, appear to be a response to vicious online tormenting.

Denham and Turpel-Lafond want the Education Ministry to ensure that learning objectives on cyberbullying be included in the provincial curriculum as soon as possible.

They also ask the attorney general to consider developing prosecution guidelines on how to apply criminal law to cyberbullying cases while recognizing that online harassment means young people can be both perpetrator and victim.

The report adds that social media companies and Internet providers bear some responsibility for the actions of their users.

The Canadian Press