ICYMI: Durbin, Senate Judiciary Committee Delivering On The Demands Of Youth Advocates At The Forefront Of Children’s Online Safety Debate

WASHINGTON – In case you missed it, The Washington Post highlighted the involvement of youth advocates in the Senate Judiciary Committee’s work to protect children’s online safety.

Earlier this summer, U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, met with youth advocates from Design It For Us, a coalition of youth-led organizations that advocates for online protection for youth and young adults. Emma Lembke, a co-chair of the organization, testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee in February.

The Senate Judiciary Committee has advanced multiple bills protecting children’s online safety, a bipartisan initiative that Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer included in last week’s Dear Colleague letter as a critical issue for the Senate to address in the remaining months of the year.

Key Quotes:

“So last year, Qureshi and a coalition of students formed Design It For Us, an advocacy group intended to bring the perspectives of young people to the forefront of the debate about online safety. They are part of a growing constellation of youth advocacy and activist organizations demanding a say as officials consider new rules to govern kids’ activity online.”

“In Washington, D.C., Design It For Us has taken part in dozens of meetings with House and Senate leaders, White House officials and other advocates. In February, the group made its debut testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee.”

“‘We cannot wait another year, we cannot wait another month, another week or another day to begin to protect the next generation,’ Emma Lembke, 20, who co-founded the organization with Qureshi, said in her testimony.”

“Sen. Richard J. Durbin (D-Ill.), who chairs the panel and met with the group again in July, said that Lembke ‘provided powerful testimony’ and that their meetings were one of ‘many conversations that I’ve had with young folks demonstrating the next generation’s call for change.’” 

Read full story here.