David Hutt, 29 April 2010

The NSW Greens have given notice that they will be moving to lift the ban on selling X18+ pornography in NSW. Greens MLC and Federal Senate candidate for NSW, Lee Rhiannon (pictured) has flagged her intention to push to have the ban lifted when Parliament sits next month.

ACL is strongly opposed to any attempt to lift the current ban. ACL today cautioned against lifting the ban and said the Little Children Are Sacred report into child abuse in the Northern Territory demonstrated why the ban was needed.

NSW doesn’t need this destructive material. We have already seen the sort of devastation hardcore porn has wrought on communities in the Northern Territory. Its ability to destroy children’s lives was one of the key reasons for the Australian Government’s intervention in the Northern Territory.

When launching the Intervention, the previous Federal Government reasoned that, “The Little Children are Sacred report revealed that the availability of pornography in Indigenous communities is a factor that contributes to child sexual abuse in those communities, being used to groom children for sex, and normalising inappropriate sexualised and violent behaviour in children”.

The report into child abuse in the Northern Territory demonstrated a clear link between the availability of hardcore pornography and child abuse. It is discriminatory to suggest that the children and families of NSW are somehow immune from the consequences of easily-available porn.

NSW Attorney-General, John Hatzistergos recently told Parliament that any move to lift the ban contravened the NSW Greens’ policy on women. “I have read the Greens policy on women, which is clearly against pornography that ‘discriminates against women by presenting them as suitable objects for violent or sexual exploitation’.” Mr Hatzistergos suggested that Ms Rhiannon should reacquaint herself with the NSW Greens’ policy on women.

Mr Hatzistergos said selling hardcore pornography in NSW was illegal because “the community and their representatives want to minimise the opportunity for it to be distributed in this State.”