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Charlotte's law: Call to get tough on online bullies

Dawson was found dead in her home in Woolloomooloo in Sydney, Saturday, Feb 22, 2014.
Dawson was found dead in her home in Woolloomooloo in Sydney, Saturday, Feb 22, 2014. AAP Image - Dan Himbrechts

AS CHARLOTTE Dawson's sister arrived in Sydney on Monday to prepare for her funeral, a social media campaign calling on lawmakers to get tough on keyboard tormentors was attracting signatures around the globe,

Using the same platform as the online trolls who relentlessly bullied the troubled former model, hundreds of thousands signed an online petition which calls for anti-bullying legislation titled Charlotte's Law, to be introduced in Australia.

After being hospitalised in 2012, Dawson hit out at the cyberspace bullies and lobbied the Australian Government for tighter online controls.

Since the 47-year-old was discovered dead in her Sydney apartment on Saturday morning, tributes and calls for change have flooded social media.

Actor Russell Crowe, who wrote on Twitter that he didn't understand why his friend "Charley D" was gone when "there's not enough kind souls as it is", held a gathering for grieving friends and relatives at his nearby apartment.

There has been widespread media speculation that Dawson, who spoke openly about her battle with depression following the break-down of her marriage with former Olympic swimmer Scott Miller, was struggling to cope with details which emerged during her ex-husband's bizarre interview with 60 Minutes.

She is also believed to have been stressed about her financial situation and the pending auction of the luxury Woolloomooloo apartment she was renting.

Official funeral details were yet to be released last night but News.com reported a private cremation would likely be held in Sydney later in the week followed by two memorial services in Sydney and her home country, New Zealand.

For support and information about suicide prevention, contact Lifeline on 13 11 14.

Topics:  charlotte dawson suicide


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