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A seminar held in Sydney has heard that Internet pornography is causing a long-term public health crisis amongst Australian children.

Dr Joe Tucci, the head of the Australian Childhood Foundation, told the Porn Harms Kids seminar that the children’s behaviour was being shaped by the widespread availability of pornography online.

“Research has shown over 90 per cent of boys under the age of 16 have visited a pornography site online, with around 60 per cent of girls doing the same,” Dr Tucci said.

He told the seminar that a public health crisis was emerging as it is “impossible for children not to see it [pornography].”

“You only have to put innocent words like ‘love’ into Google and it takes you three or four results to get to a porn site,” Dr Tucci told the seminar.  “We will see a lot more adults emerging with sexually offending behaviour and sexually harmful behaviour towards others.

“I think the community would be shocked by the kinds of consequences we are seeing in a small group of children being exposed to this kind of pornography.  This is a public health crisis. Like smoking or other public health issues, this will have long-term consequences.”

Dr Tucci reported that health authorities nation-wide have seen an increase in the number of children engaging in problem sexual behaviour with other children.

“We have dropped children into an adult world where the concepts that they are faced with are too complex for them to understand and process properly,” he said.  “It will take a multi-pronged approach to find a solution. We need to have the conversation about what to do next.”

Image source: Getty Images

 

 

  • This is one of the biggest down sides of modern technology.

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  • horrible! have to educate kids to be safe online and have parental locks

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  • You should have to opt in to see pornography rather than find ways to opt out. It is too easy to find, even for young children.

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  • it scares me how much kids are exposed to – if not at home, then at friends… I also read recently of lots of scary things happen with kids of blended families which is terribly upsetting too

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  • This is a very serious and very troubling issue. It is becoming increasingly easy for our children to access this type of content which is very worrying.

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  • this has been an issue for a long time so im glad finally people are taking it seriously. but i dont know what the solution is!

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  • This is horrible. How can it be atopped

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  • It is far to easy to innocently come across inappropriate material on the internet. Internet usage still has to be monitored with controls in place, but unfortunately sometimes even adults can come across inappropriate material by accident.

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  • …And some of the porn you come across accidentally/ innocently is pretty hard core!

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  • That’s really disgusting. I think parents should use some form of parental control on what kids can access in the Internet. Norton for example offers a parental control software. I’m sure other companies do the same.

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  • It is scary how widley available and in your face pornography is. It’s really bad how early kids are getting sexualised and thrown into adult world.

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  • This is very disturbing and smart phones and tablets font help! The home computer can be in a main living area, but there are so very many other ways to access the Internet. Education is vital.

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