Local child advocacy center director: Parents need to know their - WPSD Local 6: Your news, weather, and sports authority

Local child advocacy center director: Parents need to know their child's online habits

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The director of a local child advocacy center is warning parents to know what their children are doing online after former Marshall County High School football coach Ron Barnard is accused of having inappropriate contact with a student.

"The message I would give parents is to teach your children boundaries," said Lee Emmons. It sounds simple, but Lee Emmons said it is a conversation some parents may avoid.

"We need to teach our children and tell them it is okay to say no," she said.

Emmons is the director of Paducah's Child Watch Counseling and Advocacy Center.She has talked with children who were abused by someone in a position of authority.  She said an adult sending nude pictures to a child meets the legal definition of abuse.

"They can be very traumatic or it can be what we think as subtle but it can permeate that child's psyche," Emmons told Local 6.

Which is why, Emmons believes, parents need to get involved early in what their kids are doing.That includes monitoring social media. "What are they doing online? What all do they have access to? Which methods of social media are they using?"

It goes beyond looking at who your child is talking to, but how.  "We need to to teach them to stop if that feels inappropriate, stop and tell someone," she said. 

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