Thousands use social media to voice experiences of sexual harassment
By Megan Rose
In response to calls from anti-violence and gender equality campaigners, thousands of people have shared experiences of sexual harassment in an effort to make SRE (sex and relationships education) a compulsory part of the curriculum.
The campaign, initiated by the Everyday Sexism Project’s founder Laura Bates, has encouraged people to adopt the hashtag #SREnow to share their personal encounters of sexual harassment. The move is designed to support the End Violence Against Women coalition campaign - as well as supporting the increasing demand for young people to receive appropriate SRE in school.
Some people's responses have outlined their complete lack of SRE, with others saying how much happier they would have been growing up if they had received proper advice and support.
Bates, in an open letter to Education Secretary Justine Greening, said: ‘It’s a scandal that our schools do not equip young people with the skills they need to understand consent, healthy relationships, LGBT rights and relationships, gender stereotypes and online pornography.’ A recent study found that current SRE is ‘inadequate’ in UK schools, with important issues such as consent completely non-existent.
She cited 5,500 cases of sexual harassment which were reported in schools over a three year period – 600 of which were rape. ‘We owe every child clear, age-appropriate information, so they can understand that abuse isn’t normal, and learn how to navigate healthy relationships’ she added.
Parent Zone recently interviewed Sarah Champion, the shadow minister for Preventing Domestic and Physical Abuse, about the necessity for sex education to be made mandatory in schools. The responsibility the Government has to carry this out is something she passionately highlights. The interview will be published soon.
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Image: Public Domain