Regulate the use of smartphones and tablets to protect minors from the pitfalls and risks associated with the massive use of these devices. This is, in short, what is foreseen by the bill No. 2949 initiated, among others, by the former minister Fioramonti, presented on March 15, 2021 and then assigned to the IX Transport Commission of the Chamber in the Referent office on April 29, 2021 Parents, who risk up to 1,500 euros in fines, must check that under 12s do not violate the rules. The text, reads on studiocataldi.it, is inspired by the research of eminent scholars and various associations that have found a series of negative effects (including physical and psychological pathologies) in children and adolescents due to continued use (rectius, ” abuse “) of so-called” smartphones “, ie cell phones and other mobile radio devices. It would not only deal with potential health problems, but also with educational and psychic development issues. An alarm launched on several occasions also in our country (especially by doctors of the Italian Society of Preventive and Social Pediatrics), as Italy is first in Europe for the use of cell phones and for the decrease in age The proposed law provides for an absolute ban in the first three years of life, while from 4 to 6 years it would be allowed to gradually introduce the child to technology for no more than an hour a day, and then move on to three hours a day in the age group between 6 and 8 years. From 9 to 12 years of age, however, the use of media devices would be limited to four hours a day, always under the supervision of parents (or guardians) and with the absolute prohibition of autonomous use. In the exclusive interest of minors, it is provided that the parents (or whoever takes their place) are responsible for observing the illustrated provisions: towards those who will allow their children not yet 12 years old to surf online and use smartphones, tablets and any other digital device without accompaniment and educational assistance, financial penalties (fine) are foreseen from a minimum of 300 euros to a maximum of 1,500 euros.And while other countries have adopted measures or presented legal reforms to limit in various ways the ‘use of smartphones in younger people, even the Italian deputies considered it essential to intervene, as stated in the introductory report, “before this situation escapes all control, providing adequate provisions to protect above all those who see a cell phone as a harmless means of fun and entertainment “. The bill “does not want to be a crusade against technology”, especially by virtue of the positive impacts that in certain situations this can have on preschool learning, provided however “that there is constant support from parents, to whom it is always up to and in any case to be vigilant and to set a good example “. The introductory report also mentions the general risks caused by the access of minors to the internet, young and vulnerable subjects, with often dramatic consequences, as shown by the cases that jumped to the chronicles of victims very young of some “extreme challenges” that have spread on social networks. Hence the need to develop a “digital awareness” that can make people understand the limit not to be crossed. The bill The bill, which therefore aims to “protect not only the health, but above all the psychophysical growth of children invoking the precautionary principle “, consists of 8 articles and proposes to introduce in our legal system the ban on the use of smartphones, tablets and any other digital device based on the age of minors. An absolute ban is envisaged in the first three years of life, while from 4 to 6 years it would be allowed to gradually introduce the child to technology for no more than an hour a day, and then move on to three hours a day in the age group between 6 and 8 years. years of age, on the other hand, the use of media devices would be limited to four hours a day, always under the supervision of parents (or whoever takes their place) and with the absolute prohibition of autonomous use. prohibitions concern the use of digital devices operating via radio frequency waves, or “any handheld electronic equipment equipped with a high-resolution touch screen that allows, in addition to mobile telephony, the use of computing, memory and network connection services internet, as well as the reproduction of music and the production of photographs and videos “. In the exclusive interest of minors, it is established that the parents (or guardians) are responsible for observing the illustrated provisions: those who will allow their children not yet 12 years old to surf online and use smartphones, tablets and any other digital device without accompaniment and educational assistance, financial penalties (fine) are foreseen from a minimum of 300 euros to a maximum of 1,500 euros. Furthermore, there is a general duty to report to the judicial authority if it becomes aware of the non-compliance with the provisions by means of an additional article to Chapter VI of Title VII of Part II of the consolidated act as per Legislative Decree no. 297/1994 the bill also aims to introduce a ban on the use of mobile phones and other electronic communication devices by pupils in primary and lower secondary schools and in other places where it takes place didactic activity. The prohibition would not apply in case of use of the devices allowed to disabled pupils in compliance with current legislation.
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