No evidence child sex dolls prevent child sexual abuse, says report

Australian Institute of Criminology releases report on child sex dolls

The Australian Institute of Criminology has released the report ‘Exploring the implications of child sex dolls’ by Rick Brown and Jane Shelling. The report discusses child sex dolls in relation to the sexualisation of children, as an “escalated form of engaging with child pornography”, the normalisation of child sexual abuse and the risk of grooming.

The authors acknowledge that there is very little empirical evidence on the implications of sex dolls and child sex dolls, and therefore also draw on research on child exploitation material and sex offences in considering the implications of sex doll use and ownership.

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Potential Harms: Escalation, Desensitisation, Objectification, Commodification and Grooming

The report documents a range of potential harms associated with the production, distribution and use of child sex dolls.

It is possible that use of child sex dolls may lead to escalation in child sex offences, from viewing online child exploitation material to contact sexual offending.

It may also desensitise the user from the potential harm that child sexual assault causes, given that such dolls give no emotional feedback.

The sale of child sex dolls potentially results in the risk of children being objectified as sexual beings and of child sex becoming a commodity.

Finally, there is a risk that child-like dolls could be used to groom children for sex, in the same way that adult sex dolls have already been used.

There is no evidence that child sex dolls have a therapeutic benefit in preventing child sexual abuse. 

The authors conclude:

It is ‘reasonable to assume that interaction with child sex dolls could increase the likelihood of child sexual abuse by desensitising the doll user to the physical, emotional and psychological harm caused by child sexual abuse and normalising the behaviour in the mind of the abuser’.

We have previously exposed Wish app and Amazon for selling child sex dolls, along with a range of other replica child body parts marketed for sexual use. In response to our campaign, Wish withdrew these items from sale. 

See also:

OPEN LETTER ON THE DANGERS OF NORMALISING SEX DOLLS & SEX ROBOTS

Child sex dolls removed from online store Wish

Against her will’: Amazon sells exploitative books glorifying rape and sexualising children


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