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Design It For Us Applauds Senate Commerce Markup Announcement on Kids’ Online Safety Bills

Design It For Us spent this week on Capitol Hill urging members of Congress from both sides of the aisle to act on KOSA and COPPA 2.0

Following the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, & Transportation’s announcement that the Kids Online Safety Act (KOSA) and the Children and Teens’ Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA 2.0) will be heading to markup on Thursday, July 27th, youth-led coalition Design It For Us issued the following statement:

“We’re thrilled to see the Senate Commerce Committee move to advance KOSA and COPPA 2.0,” Design It For Us Co-Chair Zamaan Qureshi said. “After decades of inaction by Congress on online safety and privacy to protect kids and teens online, we are another step closer to passing legislation that would offer a foundation for meaningful safeguards that shield my generation and the next from profit-driven algorithms designed to keep us addicted. It’s past time we take this critical step towards curbing the mental health epidemic that social media companies are perpetuating with zero accountability. We’re glad to see the Committee signal that Big Tech will not be let off the hook.”

“We delivered a clear message to lawmakers this week about the urgency of these bills,” said Design It For Us Co-Chair Emma Lembke. “We thank all the members who have met with us in person, including Senator Blumenthal, Senator Markey and Senator Durbin for taking the time to collaborate and listen. This marks a major turning point to protect young people from the harms of online platforms. The work doesn’t end here and we’re eager to see Congress take this to the finish line.”

This week, Design It For Us journeyed to Capitol Hill to meet with both Democratic and Republican Members of Congress and their staff (including the offices of Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin, Senator Richard Blumenthal, Senator Ed Markey, Senator Marsha Blackburn, Representative Kathy Castor, Representative Jamaal Bowman and Representative Cathy McMorris Rodgers) to add pressure and build momentum toward a markup of KOSA and COPPA 2.0 in the Senate Commerce Committee. The coalition represents a generation of young people whose experience growing up entirely online gives them a unique expertise, which they leveraged as they joined with legislators to collaborate on youth-facing policy priorities.  

Design It For Us kicked off the week with a lawn sign action on the West Lawn of the Capitol Building, planting 100 signs to represent individuals across the United States who shared their experiences with the organization on the harms of social media.

From Left: Zamaan Qureshi, Thanasi Dilos, Emma Lembke, Jules Terpak, Emi Kim

Design It For Us met with several members of Congress including Senators Durbin, Markey, Blumenthal, and Representatives Castor and Bowman, and concluded the week with a meeting with White House Officials at the Gender Policy Council.

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