The forum was organized by Andrea B. Goetz, the Assistant Commissioner for the Office of Clinical Practice, Policy & Support. Kelly Wallace, CNN Editor-at-Large and Reporter on Family, Life, and Work moderated the panel discussion. I was joined on the panel by Dr. Laneeka Ross, the Director of Treatment Family Foster Care for Graham-Windham, and Dr. Matthew Oransky, a psychologist at the Mt. Sinai Child & Adolescent Clinic.
The wide-ranging conversation covered a large number of different topics but the bulk of the conversation focused on the pros and cons of social media for kids facing various personal, familial, and social challenges. A lot of concerns were raised about the vulnerability of children online to bullying and harassment, the threats to self-image, the possibility of suicidal ideation, and so on. At the same time, there was also a recognition of the power of social media to provide a sense of community to teens and pre-teens who may not have that type of support in the “real” world.
It was an honor to participate in the forum and to have a chance to address so many dedicated professionals who have devoted their working lives to protecting and supporting children. A copy of the agenda from this morning’s event is below.
Feedback from Moderator Kelly Wallace:
Huge thanks to [Andrea] for organizing such a spectacular event … and to LaNeeka, Matt and Fred, all I can say is it was a honor to have this conversation with you. I have participated in many panels but this was one of the best ever. Great info, excellent advice, tons of passion and an engaged audience for three hours. Wonderful all around.