Sextortion and safety – Internet + Media Mini-edu Session

The Education Team has a question from a parent regarding Internet use and an issue known as sextortion. Some of the topics in this question may be triggering or hard to read. Emotional safety is very important to the CASASC education team. We do feel the following question is important to answer. If you need any further support, you can reach out to our help line anytime at 1-866-956-1099.

Parent Question: Hi there, I have a question. My daughter is a teenager and is spending more time online. We as a family have talked about how to act and treat others online. I am not concerned about that. What I am concerned about is her getting in trouble with people asking for her images online. I remember the Amanda Todd case from years ago and I am worried that she may be tricked into a similar situation. How can I talk to my daughter about this, and make sure she is safe online?

CASASC Response:

The issue you are describing is sextortion. Sextortion is where someone (a peer or stranger) asks for a person’s nude images and then uses those images as blackmail in order to receive more images or money to stop the images from being leaked or sent out to loved ones. It is a rare, yet serious form of online violence that can happen to anyone regardless of gender. The Amanda Todd case you mentioned is a Canadian example of this issue and it unfortunately ended in her suicide.

Sextortion can happen with something as innocent as flirting or chatting online with a peer or stranger. Sometimes images are asked for outright or a person may be prompted to flash or expose themselves on a web camera. Then, the other person may take a screenshot from their computer or device, thus saving the image as blackmail material. This is known as “camming” and is what happened in Amanda’s case.

In Canada, under the Criminal Code, harassment, uttering threats and distributing images of someone who is under 18 is illegal and those found responsible can be charged. Sextortion involves blackmail and processing and/or distributing images of child pornography, both of which are illegal acts.

It is good to hear that you want to keep your daughter safe from being sextorted. Like cyberbullying or stalking, sextortion can have numerous mental, emotional and social consequences for the youth involved.

Online harassment can have detrimental effects that can last for a lifetime. Some effects include an increased risk of suicidal thoughts, self harm, loss of feeling safe, social anxiety, being isolated from friends and peers, etc. (1)

There are ways that you as the parent can help support and teach your daughter to avoid being put into a position where she could be sextorted. We have included the links to several websites as further resources.

You can teach your daughter to recognize the following warning signs when chatting with someone online as outlined by Cybertip.ca, a great resource for online safety.

Warning Signs:

1)Everything happens quickly

The other person either asks for images or videos outright, wants to speak on a web camera (through web functions like Zoom, Skype or Messenger) or starts asking for personal information that may be used against a youth later.

2)Chatting becomes sexual

This can be through jokes, innuendos, or regular chatting and flirting.

3)Attention Bombing

This essentially means making contact numerous times a day. This can be controlling behaviour masked as someone who is caring and attentive.

4)Using threats

This can be a way to make someone feel unsafe, embarrassed, or guilty, all in a way to make them comply with requests for images or to chat via web camera.

5)Provides inconsistent information

What they say vs. what they post, or share may be different. For example, a person online may say they are 15 years old, but the images they send appear to be of someone older. A person who uses sextortion against others may pretend they are younger, or pretend they are a different gender to receive images. For example, a man may pretend to be a younger girl to chat with boys online.

Red Flags:

If your child notices any of these red flags, it is important that they know they can come to you, or another trusted adult to talk about and report the issue. You as the parent must make sure you remain calm, open and listen to your daughter, so to not discourage her from coming to you with a future problem. Have her show you what is going on and try and document as much as you can. This includes any email addresses, online handles, usernames, location, contact information etc. Then, block this person and report to the police. Alberta RCMP have an Integrated Child Exploitation Unit (ICE) who investigate matters of online sexual exploitation in minors, including sextortion concerns.

If your daughter comes to you, and worries that she may have been a victim of sextortion, it is important to remember the following things:

1)Stay calm and do not panic

For both you and her. Your next steps are to document as much as you can and report it. This can be done through your local RCMP, or through CyberTip.ca, which does handle reporting of online harassment and sextortion.

2)Immediately stop all communication

This involves deactivation—not deleting—any accounts, and not logging in or checking to see if the person contacted you again. You can ask your daughter to show you how to deactivate an account, or the web platform’s help center may have more information.

3)Do not comply with any threats

This is important for any youth to know. They do not have to do anything they are uncomfortable with or feel may be harmful to them. If it makes them uncomfortable, they should log off and speak with a trusted adult.

Remember, it is never the youth’s fault, it is always the person’s fault for using threats and blackmail.

 

Additional Resources:

1) https://mediasmarts.ca/sites/default/files/guides/ywca-guide-for-trusted-adults.pdf

2) www.dontgetsextorted.ca

 

Lavish Paws Grooming sponsors Oscar

CASASC is pleased to announce pet care company Lavish Paws Grooming is the official grooming sponsor of Oscar, CASASC pet therapy dog.

Lavish Paws Grooming will be giving Oscar the royal treatment including bathing, brushing, ear cleaning and nail care each month.

Lavish Paws Grooming is located in Gasoline Alley and provides full service pet grooming.

CASASC is thrilled by this sponsorship, which ensures Oscar’s grooming needs are met by a local company.

Stay tuned for updates on Oscar every two weeks.

Now Hiring Self-identified Indigenous Community Outreach Specialist

The Central Alberta Sexual Assault Support Centre (CASASC) is seeking a self-identified Indigenous individual to join the Kinship Intervention Program (KIP) team as the Community Outreach Specialist.

About Us:

The Central Alberta Sexual Assault Support Centre (CASASC) is a voluntary, non-profit organization serving the Central Alberta region under the direction of a community-based Board of Directors.

We specialize in healing sexual trauma so you can talk freely about the hard stuff with no judgement. We provide a range of support services for individuals who are affected by sexual violence including counselling, play therapy, police and court support, crisis support and education.

Position: KIP Community Outreach Specialist

Accountability to: KIP Project Lead

Job Type: Full time

Location: Red Deer, Central Alberta

Anticipated Start Date: February 8, 2021

Position Summary

The KIP Community Outreach Specialist is a collaborative member of the KIP program who works in partnership with the KIP Project Lead to achieve the objective of the KIP project: the prevention of sexual assault incidents within the Indigenous juvenile population in Central Alberta. This involves evidence-based early intervention for issues including underlying childhood sexual behaviour concerns. The overall goal is to utilize a multi-system approach.

KIP Project Summary

The project address the following outcomes based on the CPAF terms and conditions:

Short term outcomes:

  • Early intervention
  • Safety/prevention planning
  • Increased life coping skills

Intermediate outcomes:

  • Improved parent-youth relationships
  • Developing self-regulation and relaxation skills in youth
  • Assisting youth identify a plan for successful management of non-reoffending

Long term outcomes:

  • Youth becoming responsible and productive citizens
  • Decrease the number of at-risk youth engaging in sexual abuse and/or delinquency
  • Increased parents’ skills and competencies to support their youth

Responsibilities:

  • Work collaboratively with the CASASC Education Team to develop educational resources and training materials for staff interacting with Indigenous youth their family and the school system on cultural sensitivity, Indigenous therapies and intercultural counselling methods.
  • Establish and enhance communication and partnerships with communities and key Elders in the communities.
  • Build relationships with Elders in surrounding communities for guidance on cultural approaches that may complement service delivery (ex: smudging, preparing the room prior to a therapy session).
  • Any other duties or tasks as assigned by the KIP Project Lead or CASASC leadership team.

Qualifications:

  • 2 years completed Post-secondary education OR
  • 2-5 years working experience in a related field.
  • Experience working with survivors of sexual abuse, sexual violence, domestic violence, and/or mental health will be considered an asset.

The KIP Community Outreach Specialist role is designated for a candidate who self-identifies as Indigenous, with a preference given to an Indigenous individual who has experience in Indigenous-based community needs and cultural practices.

How to Apply:

Email resume & cover letters to hr@casasc.ca. Please ensure your name and job title are included in the subject line. Attachments must be in either PDF or Word (.doc/.docx) format.

We thank all applications for their interest, but only those selected for an interview will be contacted.

Application deadline: February 1, 2021 at 12:00 pm.

Rotary Club of Red Deer supports help line

The Central Alberta Sexual Assault Support Centre (CASASC) recently received funding from the Rotary Club of Red Deer.

CASASC Executive Director Patricia Arango accepted the $5,000 grant funding from Rotary Club members during their virtual monthly meeting on January 11.

The grant awarded to CASASC supports the ongoing operation of the 24 Sexual Violence Text, Webchat and Phone Help Line.

The help line is a community-driven support line available to anyone within the community, anytime of the day, who is affected by sexual violence. Anonymous, confidential support, information and referrals are provided through this volunteer-driven help line. Whether you’ve recently experienced sexual violence, you are a friend of someone who has in the past, or you are a support person who has a question, trained volunteers are there to listen and support. They are here to connect with you where you are and empower you to your next steps towards healing. This line is available to anyone in need across Alberta.

The 24 help line provides around the clock support in real-time, assisting with immediate issues of stress, distress or triggers. During the pandemic the help line saw a substantial increase: in July 2020 the help line saw a 234% increase in demand for service compared to July 2019. A 90.3% increase for service was recorded from June 2020 to July 2020.

The funds from the Rotary Club were generated from the Annual Christmas Donation campaign. Four other community organizations in Red Deer also recieved funds.

 

Now Hiring Human Resources Specialist

Reporting to the Executive Director and working closely with the leadership team, as the HR Specialist you will manage the day-to-day operations of the human resource department, as well as the administration of the human resources policies, procedures, and programs. The HR Specialist is responsible for employee relations, training and development, benefits, compensation, organizational development, and hiring/recruitment.

Responsibilities will include:
• Recruitment, employee orientation, development, and training
• Performance management and improvement systems
• Regulatory compliance and reporting
• Policy development and documentation

Applicants invited for an interview will be provided with a full job description.

The ideal candidate would possess the following qualifications, however some equivalencies may be considered:
• Bachelor’s degree in business administration, human resources, or a relevant field
• A minimum of 3 years’ proven experience in a similar role
• CPHR designation or Candidate status working towards designation
• Understanding of general human resources policies and procedures
• Strong knowledge of the Alberta Employment Standards Code and Canadian labour laws and legislation
• Outstanding knowledge of MS Office
• Experience with HRIS systems (e.g. PeopleSoft)
• Excellent interpersonal and people skills
• Aptitude in problem-solving and conflict management
• Outstanding verbal and written communication skills
• Strong knowledge of labour legislation and payroll processes
• Knowledge and experience with the world of non-governmental organizations would be an asset to consider.
• Candidates will also have to undergo a Criminal Record Check, must have a valid driver’s license with valid and satisfactory driver’s abstract as well as standard first aid with CPR “C” and AED.

Qualified applicants should apply by sending resume and cover letter to parango@casasc.ca

CASASC is an equal opportunity employer, that values diversity of people and communities, and are committed to excellence and inclusion in our organization and as such we welcome applications from all qualified individuals.

*Only those applicants invited for an interview will be contacted. CASASC is committed to providing barrier-free environment and accommodation in accordance with the Accessibility of Alberta with Disabilities Act. If contacted for an employment opportunity, please advise Human Resources if you require accommodation at any stage of the recruitment process.

*This competition may be used to fill future vacancies.

Application deadline: Sunday, January 17, 2020 @ 4 p.m.

Feed Sam sponsors Oscar, pet therapy dog

The Central Alberta Sexual Assault Support Centre (CASASC) is pleased to announce that pet company Feed Sam is the official food sponsor of Oscar, CASASC’s newest pet therapy dog

Feed Sam will be supplying Oscar, a four month old bernedoodle, with all of his nutritional needs each week.

Feed Sam was founded in June 2019 in Lethbridge by Burton and Val. They recently opened a location in Red Deer.

“The knowledge offered by Burton and Val comes from years involved in training, showing and breeding dogs,” says Feed Sam’s website. “Val’s additional experience as a Certified Holistic Nutritionist and their combined 35 years experience researching and feeding a raw diet make Feed Sam the last stop you will ever need to make for all your raw feeding needs and nutritional questions.

“Prior to opening Feed Sam a regular conversation in their house went something like ‘Hey did you remember to pick up dog food?’ with a common response being ‘Nope sure didn’t, I’ll be right back!’ For that reason they decided to utilize their years of experience to open their own pet store, offering not only great service, dedication and knowledge, but also a delivery service. The Feed Sam delivery service not only offers a one-time purchase option but also the ability to set your delivery to a recur on a schedule that best suits your life…’set it and forget it’, no more running out.”

CASASC is thrilled by this sponsorship, which ensures Oscar’s needs are met by a local company. Please visit them online at https://feedsam.com

Oscar waits diligently for his food delivery, that arrives right to his front door and is placed in a special bin, keeping it safe from the elements and critters.

Oscar has also been excited about the recent snowfalls in Red Deer. He has been showing his true love of winter by wanting to spend each waking minute frolicking and roaming in the snow.

He is growing by leaps and bounds, attending obedience school and training, quickly acquiring the skills needed to become a certified pet therapy dog.

Stay tuned for an Oscar update every two weeks.

Now Hiring Community + Court Support Worker

The Central Alberta Sexual Assault Support Centre (CASASC) is seeking an experienced and compassionate individual to join our Community Support Services team as the Community & Court Support Worker.

About Us:

The Central Alberta Sexual Assault Support Centre (CASASC) is a voluntary, non-profit organization serving the Central Alberta region. We provide a range of support services for individuals who are affected by sexual violence including counselling, play therapy, police and court support, crisis support and education.

Position: Community & Court Support Worker

Reports to: Community Support Services (CSS) Coordinator

Job Type: Full Time – 12-month term-certain

Location: Main Office, Red Deer, Alberta

Hours of work: 37.5 hours per week

Hourly rate: $22-25

Anticipated Start Date: December 1, 2020

Position Summary

As a part of CASASC’s Community Support Services team the Community & Court Support Worker is trained to listen and support you while you are considering or navigating the criminal justice system. They are advocates and sources of information for you – that safe guiding presence throughout the process.

Community & Court Support Worker also covers visits to those in the hospital or clients who face barriers in accessing in-office services. Outreach services are currently provided in, but not limited to: Maskwacis, Rocky Mountain House, Sylvan Lake, Olds, Wetaskiwin, Pigeon Lake, Red Deer and the Red Deer Regional Hospital.

Court Support:

  • Assist victims of sexual abuse/assault as they navigate their way through the criminal justice process including police investigations, preliminary hearings and trials.
  • Provide advocacy services to victim/survivors of sexual assault.
  • Assist with referrals for crisis care services for recent victims/survivors.
  • Provide specialist support and information regarding victim/survivors’ rights and options with legal and medical issues.
  • Provide assistance with court preparation and court accompaniment.

Community Support:

  • Attend interagency meetings as a representative of CASASC
  • Build strong working relationships with Victim Services Unit (VSUs) and Police Services (RCMP and Municipal) within service areas.

Other:

  • Provide program relevant statistical data for reports to CSS Coordinator
  • Promote self-development and professional growth through participation in training
  • Participate in staff meetings, team meetings, and committees as assigned
  • Any other duties or tasks as assigned by the CSS Coordinator

Qualifications:

  • Degree in Psychology, Social Work, Sociology or related degree/diploma
  • 2-3 years of work experience providing community or court support
  • Experience with Case Management and Caseload Planning
  • Experience working with survivors of sexual abuse, sexual violence, domestic violence, and/or mental health will be considered an asset.
  • Experience with Aboriginal and Indigenous communities and extensive knowledge of culture, customs, and traditions (preferred).

Desired Skills:

  • Superior organizational & computer skills
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills.
  • Ability to set priorities, solve problems and be resourceful under pressure
  • Exceptional interpersonal skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to work independently with complex cases
  • Able to work collaboratively in a team environment
  • Demonstrated crisis intervention skills

Addition Requirements (must be valid at time of hire):

  • RCMP Criminal Record Check with Vulnerable Sector Screening
  • Valid Driver’s licence with valid and satisfactory Driver’s abstract

Benefits:

  • Employee assistance program
  • Flexible schedule

How to Apply:

CASASC is an equal opportunity employer and we value the importance of diversity, dignity and worth of every individual in the workplace.

Email resume & cover letters with salary range expectations to hr@casasc.ca. Please ensure your name and job title are included in the subject line. Attachments must be in either PDF or Word (.doc/.docx) format.

We thank all applications for their interest, but only those selected for an interview will be contacted.

Application deadline: Sunday November 22, 2020 @ 11:59 p.m.

Servus Credit Union supports No Secrets

The Central Alberta Sexual Assault Support Centre (CASASC) recently received a donation from Servus Credit Union.

CASASC Community Support Services Coordinator Carlia Schwab (left) accepted the $3,000 donation from Servus Credit Union North Hill Branch Manager Vangi Willington on Nov. 6.

The donation to CASASC will be used towards program materials for the new No Secrets classroom activity box.

No Secrets is a personal safety program for children ages 5 to 9 (Kindergarten to Grade 4) with a focus on child sexual abuse prevention. No Secrets provides a forum from which children can discuss safe and unsafe touching, body parts including private areas, feelings and who you can tell. In 2019, No Secrets was presented to over 13,000 students in Central Alberta.

November is Family Violence Prevention Month

The Central Alberta Sexual Assault Support Centre (CASASC) is dedicated to supporting those affected by sexual violence each and every day of the year.

In Alberta, November is Family Violence Prevention Month (FVPM). The goal of FVPM is to raise public awareness around family violence and to educate communities on how to prevent it.

What is Family Violence:

Family violence is when someone uses abusive behaviour to control and/or harm a member of their family, or someone with whom they have an intimate relationship.

Family violence includes many different forms of physical, sexual and emotional abuse, as well as neglect carried out by family members or intimate partners. It may include a single act of violence, or a number of acts that form a pattern of abuse. Family violence can have serious and sometimes fatal consequences for victims and for those who see or hear the violence.

Family violence can happen to people of all ages, abilities, cultural and spiritual backgrounds, gender identities and sexual orientations. Victims can be in romantic relationships, divorced, children (birth, step, adopted or foster), grandparents, or individuals with guardians or caregivers.

Family Violence and COVID-19:

Rates of family violence increase during and following natural disasters, public health crises and economic downturns. It is important to know where you can turn if you are experiencing family violence during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Child sexual abuse

With the added stress and time together caused by COVID-19, families with unhealthy relationships are more likely to experience child sexual violence.

Social isolation

Isolation is a risk factor for family violence. Many people who experience family violence use their support of friends and family to manage their situation. Social distancing and self-quarantine or isolation during the COVID-10 pandemic can make it more challenging to access valuable relationships, but there are ways to stay connected.

How You Can Stay Involved All Month Long

Throughout November we’re featuring different ways you can get involved by promoting awareness. Want to get involved? We’ve got you covered. We’ve created custom FVPM graphics for you to share, tweet and tag CASASC throughout the month, along with many other resources and events:

-Purple ribbons – Small silk purple ribbons will be available at both CASASC locations throughout the month. Wear the purple ribbon in unity to show survivors of family violence that they are not alone.

-Purple #iRespect t-shirt – CASASC will have a special edition MADE TO Respect t-shirt available. Staff are encouraged to wear theirs throughout the month, and on Purple Day.

Events:

-Purple Day – Thursday, November 19th

Wear purple on this day to honour those affected by family violence. We believe in creating a world in which everyone feels safe in their homes. Show us your purple by sporting your purple #iRespect t-shirt, the purple ribbon or other purple items.

-Film Showing – Thursday, November 19th, Time TBA

Two short films on the topic of family violence will be shown at Carnival Cinemas. Time TBA. This event is a partnership between CASASC and the Central Alberta Film Festival (CAFF). We are so excited about this partnership and being able to feature two Alberta-made short films.

-Silent Witnesses (Purple Silhouettes) – TBA

CASASC will be hosting an outdoor exhibit with silent witnesses (purple human figure cut outs) to bring awareness to the issue of family violence in our community. The exhibit will be able to be viewed from your vehicle. More details to come.

-Ask An Educator Day – Friday, November 13th

On this day our amazing education team will be hosting a social media takeover of CASASC’s accounts. They will be answering questions throughout the day and will feature resources and information about programs and several topics. Later in the day, Coffee Chat with CASASC (our live chat show) makes it return with Bailey and Kailee both going live to answer questions. Make sure to tune in throughout the day.

-Made With Love Raffle – Ongoing month of November

The Made With Love store is hosting a raffle for CASASC throughout the month of November. Stop in the shop (5560 45 St Unit E15, Red Deer, AB)to purchase a ticket for the raffle basket, full of handcrafted items from the store. We are thrilled with this partnership with a local business.

Now Hiring Adult Counsellor

The Central Alberta Sexual Assault Support Centre (CASASC) is seeking an experienced and innovative individual to join our clinical team as a Counsellor (Adult).

About Us:

The Central Alberta Sexual Assault Support Centre (CASASC) is a voluntary, non-profit organization serving the Central Alberta region under the direction of a community-based Board of Directors.

We specialize in healing sexual trauma so you can talk freely about the hard stuff with no judgement. We provide a range of support services for individuals who are affected by sexual violence including counselling, play therapy, police and court support, crisis support and education.

Position: Counsellor (Adult)

Reports to: Clinical Coordinator

Job Type: Full Time – 12-month term-certain (maternity-leave), with possibility for extension

Location: Main Office, Red Deer, Alberta

Hours of work: 37.5 hours per week

Hourly rate: $25-35/hr

Anticipated Start Date: November 2, 2020

Position Summary

The Counsellor is a collaborative member of the CASASC Clinical team who provides crisis, short-term, and long-term counselling services to those affected by sexual violence, regardless of the length of time since the trauma incident.

The role of the Counsellor is to provide individual or group sessions to support personal coping skills and accelerate recovery in those who are experiencing the after-effects of a trauma.

Responsibilities:

  • Provide crisis intervention, problem solving, and/or psycho-educational supports to individuals, groups, and/or families.
  • Provide goal directive supportive counselling in the client’s preferred format (in-person, telephone, or video chat)
  • Ensure safety planning is provided to according to agency standards
  • Provide community information, referrals, and services by accompaniment, in accordance with agency and professional standards.
  • Adhere to the code of ethics and standards of practice of both the agency and the applicable professional regulatory body.
  • Maintain digital records of topics covered and results of individual and/or group counselling activities in accordance with agency standards
  • Assist with crisis calls/webchats/texts, intakes, walk-ins, and/or visitor inquiries
  • Build strong working relationships with health services agencies, community organizations, and peers
  • Any other duties or tasks as assigned by the Clinical Coordinator

Qualifications:

  • Degree in Psychology, Social Work or related diploma & professional registration (RSW, RPN). ** Preference for those with clinical experience and/or currently enrolled in a Master’s degree or post-Graduate program in Counselling **
  • 2-5 years working experience providing individual and group counselling/support
  • Experience with Case Management and Caseload Planning
  • Experience working with survivors of sexual abuse, sexual violence, domestic violence, and/or mental health will be considered an asset.

Desired Skills:

  • Superior organizational & computer skills
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills.
  • Ability to set priorities, solve problems and be resourceful under pressure
  • Exceptional interpersonal skills.
  • Demonstrated ability to work independently with complex cases
  • Able to work collaboratively in a team environment
  • Demonstrated crisis intervention skills
  • Availability to work flexible hours (days and some evenings)

Addition Requirements (must be valid at time of hire):

  • RCMP Criminal Record Check with Vulnerable Sector Screening

Benefits:

  • Employee assistance program
  • Flexible schedule
  • Work from home

How to Apply:

CASASC is an equal opportunity employer and we value the importance of diversity, dignity and worth of every individual in the workplace.

Email resume & cover letters with salary range expectations to hr@casasc.ca. Please ensure your name and job title are included in the subject line. Attachments must be in either PDF or Word (.doc/.docx) format.

We thank all applications for their interest, but only those selected for an interview will be contacted.

Application deadline: Wednesday October 21, 2020 at 12:00 pm.