News by email Donate

Suggestions

Child with headphones on computer.jpg
Alamy
Child with headphones on computer.jpg
Alamy
World News

Changes made to Online Safety Bill as campaigners say government has taken long enough

by Sophie Drew

A new version of the Online Safety Bill is to be brought forward to the House of Commons before Christmas, and Christian campaigners are urging the government not to let it slip through the cracks. 

Previously, the bill contained a controversial provision surrounding content that was “legal but harmful.” 

It made reference to content that was well-within the parameters of the law but was still harmful if witnessed by young or vulnerable people. 

That aspect of the bill – which is widely cited as the reason for very significant delays because of the vague terminology used - is now believed to have been removed.

Free speech organisations are celebrating the return of the bill, which will now focus on children’s safety predominantly. 

This comes after significant pressure from parents and campaigners, many of whom have seen children and young people significantly harmed after seeing inappropriate content online. 

James Mildred, from Christian charity CARE – and organisation that has campaigned on the issue for a number of years – said: “News that the government has rethought controversial aspects of the bill targeting ‘legal but harmful’ expression is welcome and we will await further detail of this. 

“CARE and many other organisations are concerned central civil liberties are threatened by the bill. 

“The fact that Ministers are aware of the need to protect vulnerable children is also to be welcomed, although they are certainly taking their time about it.

“Brits were promised better protections for children from online pornography in 2016. A law passed by parliament was never actually enacted by Ministers, and later scrapped. 

“Age verification measures then reappeared in the Online Safety Bill but have been kicked down the road time and again. Children can no longer afford to wait for the safeguards they desperately need.”
 

A Monthly Gift Of $11 Makes A World Of Difference

In a world of fake news there’s never been a greater need for quality Christian journalism. Premier’s mission is to provide the Church with the most up to date and relevant news, told from a Christian perspective. But we can’t do it without you.

Unlike many websites we haven't put up a paywall — we want to keep our journalism free at the point of need and as open as we can. Premier’s news output takes a lot of time, money and hard work to produce. No one in the USA is sharing news like we are across radio, magazines and online so please help us to continue that today.

For a monthly gift of $11 or more we’d also be able to send you a free copy of the brand new Premier Bible, a wonderful Anglicised version of the NLT packed with exclusive bonus content, reading plan and resources to help you get the most out of scripture.

Your monthly support will make a world of difference. Thank you.

Support Us
Continue the conversation on our Facebook page

Related Articles

Sign up to our newsletter to stay informed with news from a Christian perspective.

News by email

Connect

Donate

Donate