Online Safety Bill: Women

Department for Science, Innovation and Technology written question – answered at on 20 June 2023.

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Photo of Kate Kniveton Kate Kniveton Conservative, Burton

To ask the Secretary of State for Science, Innovation and Technology, whether her Department has made an assessment of the potential merits of including a Violence Against Women and Girls Code of Practice in the Online Safety Bill.

Photo of Paul Scully Paul Scully Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)

The Online Safety Bill will provide vital protections for women and girls to ensure they can express themselves freely online without fear of harassment or abuse.

My department has considered the merits of a Violence Against Women & Girls Code of Practice, along with the other priorities for the regulatory framework. The current approach ensures that Ofcom is able to draft codes in a way that prevents a delay to implementation, gives clarity to companies and allows platforms to address a range of interrelated risks affecting different groups of users, such as those with more than one protected characteristic. I am satisfied that this ensures a holistic, comprehensive and effective approach to tackling VAWG within the Bill.

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