Studies have revealed the deliberate design of social media platforms encourages harmful behaviors, intensifies issues such as anxiety, depression, eating disorders, and feelings of inadequacy, and provides a venue for unwanted sexual advances on minors. These research findings align with disclosures from multiple whistleblowers who testified before the U.S. Congress, providing further support for the independent research results. The ultimate goal of Sen. Rezin’s Safe Screens, Healthy Minds initiative is to directly address those concerns through the introduction and passage of legislation.

Safe Screens, Healthy Minds’ Survey

As we strive to address the harmful efforts that social media presents to minors, please consider filling out my Safe Screens, Healthy Minds Survey. These survey results will be instrumental in creating real and positive change.

Safe Screens, Healthy Minds’ Legislative Package

Senate Resolution 249 – Urges the federal government to uphold its duty to create regulations that promote the well-being of minors and protect them from negative and harmful social media algorithms.

Illinois Age-Appropriate Design Code Act – This legislation protects children’s personal data by adjusting how their data is collected and processed behind the scenes. This is done by requiring high default privacy settings at the point of design. The AADC is about data privacy but seeks to strengthen children’s mental health by changing how digital companies engage with children as data is the driving force behind devious practices by digital companies.

Internet Safety Curriculum – Requires schools to distribute any information regarding their internet safety curriculum that is provided to students to also distribute that information to the students’ parents or guardians.

Children’s Data Protection Working Group – Creates the Childrens Data Protection Working Group to report to the GA on the best practices for the protection of children’s online data. Sets forth a minimum of 5 areas of concern the working group must make recommendations on.

Take a Break from Social Media Day – Establishes the third Friday in May (mental health awareness month) as Take a break from Social Media Day.

Privacy Rights Act – Creates the Privacy Rights Act which among many things sets forth duties and obligations of businesses to keep consumers personal information private.

Protect Minors from Social Media Algorithms Act – Provides that a social media platform with more than 1,000,000 account holders operating in the State is prohibited from using a social media algorithm to target user-generated content at an account holder under the age of 18. Provides that the operator of a social media platform is liable to an individual account holder who received user-generated content through a social media algorithm while the individual account holder was under the age of 18 if the operator of a social media platform knew or had reason to know that the individual account holder was under the age of 18.

Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act Expansion – Requires all social media companies to have a free customer support service to address issues and complaints with the service. If enacted it would give customers more access to Facebook to help remove inappropriate content on their sites.

COPPA Update – This is a resolution calling on the federal government to take action quickly on an update of outdated COPPA provisions.