Young People’s Views of Lowering the Age of Consent

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Research Introduction Age of consent is the age that you're allowed to have sexual activities. According to The Sexual Offence Act 2003, a person commit an offence if he touches sexually a girl under 16. Recently the Professor John Ashton, president of the Faculty of Public Health, had called for a lowering of the age of consent to make it easier for teenagers before age 16 years to seek sexual health service such as contraception from the NHS. While Downing Street reject the reduction in the age of consent. A spokesman said the current age is in place protect children and there are no plans to change it (Watt, 19). There is a public concern that lowering age of consent may guide juveniles’ attitudes towards sex negatively; it may encourage the premature sexual activities; and it may be furtherance of teenage pregnancy or even sexual crime. The concern is not groundless, and a valid social research evidence is needed for the debating and to proof or dispel doubts. The principal objective of this research is to find young people’s views of age of consent law with its changing. Literature Review In terms of young people’s sexual attitudes, the 3nd National Surveys of Sexual Attitudes and Lifestyles shows that up to 30% of teenagers have the first heterosexual intercourse before age 16 years (Mercer, et al., 2013). The finding has also been proved by many other surveys, and another consensus is people have sex at an earlier age than before (Mercer, et al., 2013). In Miranda Sawyer’s survey ‘Sex before 16’, the Bliss magazine shows a shocking data—83% of Bliss readers who’ve already had sex experience were under 16 the first time and of those, 12% were 12 or younger (Sawyer, 2003). However, the empirical research evidence is relati... ... middle of paper ... ...hanged. Works Cited Babbie, E., 2007. The practice of social research. 11th ed. Belmont, CA: Thomson Wadsworth. May, T., 2011. Social research : issues, methods and process. 4th ed. Maidenhead: McGraw-Hill/Open University Press. Mercer, C. H. et al., 2013. Changes in sexual attitudes and lifestyles in Britain through , London: Lancet. Sawyer, M., 2003. Sex before 16 : how the law is failing, London: Channel 4. Thomson, R. & Holland, J., 2002. Young People, Social Change and the Negotiation of Moral Authority. Children & Society, 16(2), pp. p103-115. Waites, M., 2005. The Age of Consent-Young People, Sexuality and Citizenship. 1 ed. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Watt, N., 19. No 10 rejects call to lower age of consent. [Online] Available at: [Accessed 2013 12 28].

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