Eartha Cumings: "Social media abuse is really hurtful and harmful because it gives you such a direct route into people’s consciousness"

Eartha Cumings yesterday spoke to Secretary of State for the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, MP Oliver Dowden, about her personal experiences of social media abuse as a female footballer.

Ahead of the government’s launch of the Online Safety Bill, the Charlton Women’s goalkeeper joined teammate Rachel Newborough and other club representatives in an event to combat online abuse.

“I am on social media but I’m not particularly active,” explained Cumings. “I don’t really have a footballers’ presence. Working in women’s football you see loads of awful comments about being a woman and about people’s race. It’s really hurtful and harmful because it gives you such a direct route into people’s consciousness even when you have no real place being there.

“We were talking about Charlton as a wider club and the way the women’s side and men’s side are becoming more and more integrated and moving in a really positive direction and talking about our own experiences in the game.”

The 21-year-old spoke of the importance of the unity at Charlton as the club continues to lead the footballing world in its ongoing fight to eliminate online hate.

“It’s always more powerful when people come together and act as a whole and show that there is really no place for online abuse in this club, in any club or indeed in society. The group is always stronger than the individual and to show that Charlton and everybody else is really intent on stamping this kind of thing out.”

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