President Paula-Mae Weeks said while technology has played a significant role in keeping relatives in touch during the pandemic, people must be wary of the misuse of technology as it could also be a factor in tearing families apart.
She made the comment in her message to commemorate the International Day of Families on Friday.
“Technology can be a double-edged sword. With children spending increasingly more time in front of screens and on the internet, there is the risk of their accessing inappropriate content as well as developing an unhealthy balance between activities and interests. The ubiquitous social media presents many avenues for predators to contact and even groom children and parents must be cognisant of their children’s online activity and familiarise themselves with the appropriate software that can monitor or prevent their exposure to actual danger.
“Parents, relatives, neighbours and friends all have a role to play in ensuring the safety and security of our children, families and, by extension, the nation. It is after all the strength and resilience of the family unit that produces a strong and resilient society,” the President said.
Weekes said while the nation finds the strength to weather the calamities of covid19, it has found ways to manage the changes and disruptions to their daily lives through technology.
She encouraged families to continue finding innovative ways to stay connected while keeping away from each other to reduce the spread of covid19 and protect those at high risk.
This year's theme Families and New Technologies explores the role of technology on the wellbeing of families, particularly in the context of the covid19 crisis.
Weekes said, “Throughout this disruptive period, technology has enabled families to continue learning, working, staying informed and accessing critical government services while adhering to the prevailing covid19 restrictions.
“We mark this day by recognising the immense strain and pressure that families have been experiencing since the onset of the covid19 pandemic.
“Job and income loss, separation from loved ones, increased domestic tensions and sadly, death has touched and devastated countless households across our nation."