Tuesday 6 December 2016

Mary Kenny: Blurring barrier between child abuse and consent

Published 13/02/2012 | 05:00

In yet another attempt to curb Britain's alarming rate of young teenage pregnancy, a group of nine schools in Southampton is now providing 13-year-old girls with "secret" contraceptive implants. That is to say, the implants -- which give contraceptive protection for three years -- are offered to the pupils without their parents' consent, although the schoolgirls may choose to inform their parents.

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The practice may be more widespread throughout England and Wales than is as yet acknowledged; but the Southampton schools were among the first to offer sexual advice clinics for young teenage girls.

One 13-year-old schoolgirl who has spoken about the procedure says she is very pleased she made the decision. She "wanted to have sex," she said, and "the implant works well and I think it is a good service. I think it has really helped me because if I am with my boyfriend and we feel like having sex, I have the peace of mind of knowing that I am okay." She has since told her mother, who praised her daughter for her "adult" decision.

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