Oona King

Tuesday, 18 June 2013 00:00

Sex and Relationship Education

   Sometimes there’s so much casualised sexism – at home, at work, in the media, in the street – that you either feel completely overwhelmed by it, or (maybe even worse) just let it wash over you.  That’s why I was thrilled to present Laura Bates with an award recently for the fantastic work she is doing to highlight the sexism that creeps in everywhere.  One way to address the issue would be to have more effective sex & relationship education at school.  In the Lords this week I raised the fact that one-third of British 16-18 year old girls experience unwanted sexual touching at school.

You can click here to read the full debate during Oral Questions, or click here to read Laura’s excellent article in the Huffington Post.   I’m pleased the minister has agreed to meet with me and Laura, so that we can impress on him the urgency required to tackle this issue.  Girls need to be taught that they deserve respect in relationships, and that unwanted and abusive relationships are unacceptable.  Boys need to be encouraged to bring out the best in themselves – this is particularly true in an age of social media and widely available online pornography, which distorts the real value of relationships.  When 80,000 British women are raped every year, we know something’s gone very wrong… and we need to take proactive steps to tackle it.

Published in Oral Questions
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