Youth and family members in Nova Scotia can now call the country's first cyberbullying investigative unit for help. The unit's investigators started on September 30, 2013, and will begin taking calls and investigating complaints immediately.
Nova Scotians can call 242-6900 in Halifax Regional Municipality or toll-free at 855-702-8324 to talk to an investigator. A new website will have information to help people determine if they are being cyberbullied and outline available options.
Five investigators will look into all cyberbullying complaints, helping victims resolve situations through informal, or legal means. The goal is to try to resolve complaints by helping the cyberbully understand the impact and consequences of their behaviour. Investigators can also apply for a cyberbullying prevention order, where the court could order a person to stop cyber communication, or confiscate the technology used for cyberbullying. And finally, a case could be referred to police, if criminal charges appear warranted.
The CyberSCAN unit is governed by the Cyber-safety Act, passed in the spring to ensure all Nova Scotians have a place to turn when they experience, or are aware of, cyberbullying. For more information, click here.