26 September 2023

eSafety Australia signs up to beat women’s abuse

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Online safety regulator, eSafety Australia has signed up as a founding member of the Global Partnership to End Online Harassment and Abuse, joining forces with international counterparts to help end the online harassment and abuse of women.

eSafety Commissioner, Julie Inman Grant said the initiative, led by the United States’ White House Gender Policy Council, was part of Denmark’s Tech for Democracy Initiative and the US Summit for Democracy.

“eSafety is honoured to be part of this global effort and looks forward to collaborating on our shared commitment to eliminating online gender-based violence,” Ms Inman Grant said.

“Misogynistic online abuse of women is often violent and sexualised, designed to silence women and stop them from advocating on important issues or promoting their businesses or work,” she said.

Ms Inman Grant said the partnership aimed to increase understanding of the pervasiveness, impact and political and economic costs of gender-based online harassment and abuse around the world.

“It will also aim to strengthen prevention of, and responses to, gender-based online harassment and abuse, with a focus on the intersection of gender, race, ethnicity, age, disability, sexual orientation and gender identity,” she said.

“Women are over-represented in reports to eSafety about image-based and adult cyber abuse, which have increased significantly during the pandemic and reflect broader gender inequalities in society.”

The Commissioner said eSafety research found that one in three working women were abused online, which led to many stepping away from digital platforms and taking a backward step in their careers.

“We know that online gender-based violence is a complex matter that transcends national borders,” she said.

“That is why eSafety looks forward to tackling these issues with our global partners, sharing insights from Australia and learning from colleagues from around the world,” Ms Inman Grant said.

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