We all know how Prince William feels about bullying. Last year he referred to it as “stupid and cruel,” something everyone on the planet — with the exception of said stupid, cruel people — can agree on. But no matter how much times goes by, bullying remains rampant, maybe even more so than ever, because of the reach it has through social media. But William is looking to put a stop to it and, honestly, all the power to him.
William hosted a video with two women: mom Lucy Alexander, who lost her son, Felix, after he took his own life after being cyberbullied; and teen Chloe Hine, who contemplated suicide after she was attacked online when she was 13.
Man, if there’s any way for the subject to hit home, it’s through Alexander and Hine’s tragic stories, both of whom are now campaigners for The Royal Foundation’s Taskforce on the Prevention of Cyberbullying. The concept for the taskforce actually came in the summer of 2016, after Will heard about a young boy “who had killed himself following a vicious campaign of online bullying,” read a statement from Kensington Palace. “As he looked into the issue further it was soon clear there were many similar stories from the UK and around the world.”
The national action plan, which brings together tech and media companies, was finally unveiled on Thursday at Google’s U.K. headquarters, and William spoke about it in length at YouTube Space London.
In his powerful speech, William says that the issue of cyberbullying and its consequences are personal, from his time as a HEMS pilot, to his work on mental health issues, and ever-present as a parent.
“My overall sense was that social media was in many ways an ungoverned space, where our children were fending for themselves,” he said. “I feel a responsibility to do what I can to help.
He added: “I am proud that listening to children and parents has been at the heart of our work. It has been their advice which has led us to this ambitious plan of action today.”
The hateful, hurtful things that get posted and documented and seemingly follow a person forever make the web a scary place — for kids and parents. How great would it be if Prince William and the taskforce can help provide a safer place for future generations? Because that’s all we as compassionate human beings should want and hope for.