MEDIA RELEASE

For release: Thursday, November 8, 2012

The Australian Christian Lobby has renewed its call for a mandatory internet filter to block refused classification material after new revelations show teenagers view explicit sexual practices as normal.

A leader at a prestigious Perth boys’ school has criticised parents for allowing their children unlimited access to the internet, which he says has caused students to believe that sexual acts such as anal and oral sex are normal for 13-year-olds because that is what they are exposed to in online pornography.

ACL spokeswoman Wendy Francis says this has highlighted the important need for the federal government to review legislation concerning the accessibility of online pornography by children.

“Talking to student about what they see online is important, but is too little too late. It is important to prevent unwanted access to pornography in the first place. In this regard the comments from Edith Cowan University’s Prof Lelia Green are naïve,” Ms Francis said.

“We must protect our children from forming unhealthy attitudes towards women and sex,” she said.

Australian research has found that children as young as 11 are regularly accessing porn online.

Research has also found that 84 per cent of boys and 60 per cent of girls have been exposed to internet sex sites accidentally.

ACL has recently made a submission to the Victorian Law Reform Committee’s inquiry into sexting, where it called on the Federal Government to introduce an internet filter to block refused classification material in an attempt to further protect children from the dangers of sexually explicit content.

Currently there is growing pressure for such a filter in the UK, with more than 110,000 people signing a petition calling for the Government to enforce opt-in filters on online pornography.