Earlier this week, Bethany, our youth & schools development worker, spoke to Radio 5 Live about the recent news that the government have put forward a proposal to introduce age verification on UK-based pornography websites. The government wants to hear your views; we have an opportunity to help shape better regulation around pornography.
In summary, the new approach would…
- Define what is meant by ‘pornographic content’ & decide which sites will be affected
- Establish a new requirement in law for commercial providers to have in place robust age verification controls for online pornographic content in the UK.
- Legislate to establish a new regulatory framework, underpinned by civil sanctions.
You may be aware the Naked Truth has been involved in briefing peers for a number of recent speeches in the House of Lords including the second reading of Baronness Howe’s Online Safety Bill. This bill was designed to put pressure on the government to make some key decisions around the issue of young people accessing pornography so we are really excited to see that this consultation is happening.
However, this is far from the end of the discussion and there are many people who disagree and are concerned with the proposal to restrict access to internet sites. At Naked Truth, we believe that watching pornography has serious physical, emotional, relational and spiritual consequences and that we have a responsibility to protect young people where possible. It is illegal for a person under the age of 18 to create, watch or distribute pornography and an age restriction on pornographic sites will help to minimise the exposure to young people, especially children who are not intentionally seeking pornography. We know that the best way to protect young people is to inform and educate and this government proposal is a significant step in raising the need for conversation & debate around the harmful impact of pornography.
The government is ‘keen to hear from parents, schools, child protection experts, the pornography industry’ and are ‘particularly keen to hear the views and experiences of young people to ensure that we are aware of the impacts of this policy.” We would like to encourage each one of you to give your own opinion and thoughts on the government’s proposal. The best way to respond is to fill in the consultation survey which consists of 16 multiple choice questions. We want to ensure that the government hears our concerns about this issue.
You can respond to the consultation survey here.
If you’d like any more information about the consultation or have any questions then send us an email at email@example.com
Click here to read the full Government proposal.
To listen to Bethany’s interview on Radio 5Live with Adrian Chiles, click here and fast forward to 1hr12minutes.