Katarina Agorelius - Vatikanstaten
14-15 november hölls en internationell konferens vid Påvliga Vetenskapsakademien i Vatikanen på temat Promoting Digital Child Dignity, främjandet av barns dignitet i den digitala världen där H.M drottning Silvia var en av deltagarna.
H.M. Drottning Silvias tal
Strax efter välkomstord från vetenskapsakademiens kansler msgr Marcelo Sánchez Sorondo, Dana Humaid från Interfaith Alliance for safer Communities och pater Federico Lombardi, medlem av Child Dignity Alliance Steering Committee, höll drottningen sitt tal.
Drottningen berättade att hon grundade stiftelsen World Childhood Foundation år 1999 för att verka för skyddet av barn mot sexuella övergrepp. Hon sa att hon vid grundandet trodde att tjugo år skulle räcka för att få bukt på det allvarliga problemet med sexuella övergrepp mot barn världen över, men att man i stället ser att barn i dagens värld är alltmer utsatta, på grund av övergrepp och utnyttjande av dem online.
Torsdag kväll, vid konferensdagens slut, fick Vatican News en intervju med Hennes Majestät drottning Silvia, där hon uttryckte sitt tack till påven Franciskus för att ha bjudit in experter, religiösa ledare och företrädare för företag som Facebook, Google och Amazon för att tala om hur man kan skydda barn såväl offline som online.
Hon uppskattade att man i Vatikanen hade samlat ledare för olika religioner för att tala om denna problematik just på grund av deras viktiga roll att påverka sina hemländers politiker, men även utbildningssystem, i skyddet mot att barn blir utnyttjade.
Trots att dagens situation är mycket allvarlig sa drottningen att hon är optimistisk, inte minst med tanke på framtagandet av framgångsrik teknologi som NetClean, som kan hitta förövarna på nätet och även de utsatta barnen och på det sättet göra polisanmälningar. Hon berättade att hon är stolt över att stiftelsen Childhood var den första att hjälpa de unga ingenjörerna att utveckla NetClean, som nu verkar i 110 länder.
Childhood har även tagit fram Barnahus, först i Sverige och nu också i många andra länder, berättade drottningen, där barn som har utsatts för övergrepp med hjälp av psykologer kan berätta vad de har varit med om. På det sättet behöver inte barnen förhöras i domstol, utan i en tryggare tillvaro tillsammans med experthjälp.
Engagemanget går vidare
Drottningen berättade avslutningsvis att hon efter denna konferens ser fram emot en annan stor konferens i Stockholm 20-21 november som H.M. Konung Carl XVI Gustaf och hon själv anordnar och som även den kommer att beröra ämnet digitalisering.
Här nedan avskrift av radiointervjun med H.M. Drottning Silvia:
Interview with H.M Queen Silvia of Sweden
Casina Pio IV Thursday 14 November Pontificial Academy of Social Sciences considering the Conference 14-15 November Promoting Digital Child Dignity
Katarina Agorelius - Vatican News
It is an immense pleasure for Vatican News to have a word with Your Majesty.
Would Your Majesty like to explain briefly what the Childhood Foundation is?
Well, to start with I would like to thank His Holiness the Pope who had invited all these experts today, to come here and to talk about the very very important issue which is very close to my heart as well. And I must say; the other day I mentioned that I really would have wished that there has been something like a “Me too” for children. Because twenty years ago nobody really talked about this issue, about the sexual abuse of children and, well, all these terrible moments for the children. So I must say: I came to a point where I thought, perhaps I could help, I could help to put a light on a very difficult issue. You know I’m not a political figure in that way, but I would like really to put a light on a very humanitarian question which was the sexual abuse of children and that’s why I founded World Childhood foundation twenty years ago.
That moment was very difficult, I felt quite alone, and so I must say I’m very happy that it is now an issue. It’s a very sad issue, but now everybody dares to talk about it, and so if you talk about it you can change things. And that’s why I’m very very happy to be here today to listen to all these experts - there are very important organisations present, but also that His Holiness has invited the religious leaders; this is wonderful. So here you could see all the religious leaders, here in the Vatican, talking to each other, talking about the problems, because they of course are very very important not only to influence the politicians in their home countries but also schools and teachers and to spread this issue and how one can help the children, help them to avoid to be exploited.
Can we see any progress in the protection of the children in these last twenty years?
Well, I’m very optimistic and there are so many organisations working with this terrible issue and there has been very successful programs like NetClean for instance, I don’t know if you heard about it, but NetClean is a group in Sweden who has been working with this issue to help to find the perpetrators. It’s a software, one could say, a software that you put in a computer in a company and so if somebody download child pornographic material there will be an alarm going to the police. And the police can secure the material, so it’s not deleted you see, and so they can study the material and then of course they get to the perpetrators. Now NetClean is in 110 countries so there are many many perpetrators who have been identified but not only the perpetrators but also the children and so they could be helped. So NetClean has done a wonderful work and they are working now internationally as well with Canada, with Australia. So it’s a very important tool of which we are very proud because Childhood where the first one to help young engineers to develop NetClean.
And then of course a second thing is advocacy centers, we could call it “Barnahus”, and so Sweden has now over fiftie Barnahus but I think Childhood was the first one to organize this advocacy center in Sweden. And now we have it in many many countries – the second one in Germany - which is very important because it avoids a child to have to be present in court. Because a child who has been sexually abused has to tell the story over and over again, sometimes eight times, nine times and of course this is for a child a terrible moment. But this Barnahus, or Childhood houses we call it as well, bring the child to this house with experts, there are psychologists with whom they can talk about what had happened and talk about it in a way that a child understands the question. And that is filmed and if the judge has a question he needs to have an answer to, he can come to that place and ask the child through the psychologist or through the police. And then they film it and this film is showed in court so the child doesn’t need to go to court and this is really wonderful because I mean, the situation is so terrible for a child… but it helps the child to tell the story.
Yes. What can be done now as a next step in promoting children’s dignity in the digital world?
We have of course twenty years ago this terrible big issue, but now with the internet everything is spread so fast... only in seconds. So there are no borders and also it’s anonymous so we don’t know who the person is that is exploiting the children, who get in contact with a child through the internet and exploit the child. So today I would say that the situation is very very serious because there are so many countries now who are developing the internet as well, like Africa, South America, now they are also using internet and of course there as well is the danger that the children will be exploited. So we see a very big danger and that’s why I’m so happy to see that also the religious leaders are here and all those organisations, because now everybody knows what’s going on. And everybody knows and feels that we have to do something.
So His Holiness had invited Facebook and Google and Amazon and yes, all those big organisations, so everybody realize: now we have really to do something hands on. We have to change that. It’s not enough to change laws which many countries did, in protection of the child but now everybody has to go into action and do it together and so I think this was really wonderful to see that the willingness is now here. It’s present.
So I’m very thankful to be here today, because next week we have a conference in Stockholm as well. His Majesty and I we thought to do something also when it comes to digitalization, so we have a big conference there to discuss the possibilities how and what can we do. So it’s going to be very exciting those two weeks now, first here but then also on the 20-21 of November in Stockholm.
Thank you very much Your Majesty.
Thank you. Thank you very much.