Porn profits before child protection: Government dismisses age verification
Collective Shout has condemned the Federal Government for refusing to adopt an age verification system as one obstacle to help protect children from exposure to pornography.
The Federal Government today published the eSafety Commisioner’s Roadmap for Age Verification along with its response.
This is a sad day for child safeguarding stakeholders who lobbied for years for an age verification system, contributing to Federal inquiries and stakeholder roundtables.
The Government has caved to the vested interests of the porn industry.
The Government has passed the buck to the development of industry codes which are still years away from being finalised. It is highly unlikely a pilot, as recommended by the eSafety Commissioner, will ever get off the ground.
It’s time to stop calling this process a “Roadmap”. There is no “Roadmap”. There are only delays and obstacles to doing anything that would bring the predatory porn industry into line.
Even while acknowledging porn as a driver of violence against women, as reflected in its National Plan to Address Violence Against Women and Children (2022-2023), the Government has allowed itself to be swayed by industry resistance to an age-verification system.
If France, Germany, UK, Louisiana and Utah can roll out age verification systems, why can’t we?
Vested interests should not be put before the wellbeing of children.
The Government’s initiatives regarding respectful relationships and consent education cannot compete with the world’s largest department of education – the global pornography industry.
Every day without Government action, more and more children are being exposed to rape, torture, sadism and extreme degradation of women, deforming their developing sexual templates. We are seeing the results in our schools every day, with a rise in sexual harassment, rape threats and demands for nudes. Primary school girls are routinely sent dick pics.
Adolescent boys aged 15-19 are the largest cohort of sexual offenders in this country,
In its response to the eSafety report, the Government concludes: “The first duty of any Government is to protect its citizens from harm.” In dismissing the adoption of proof-of-age protections for children, it has failed in this duty.
Thursday August 31, 2023
Contact: Melinda Tankard Reist