Tuesday, September 18, 2012

The Sexualisation of Children is Big Business

Liz Hurley has come under fire from child protection groups for her new line of children’s swimwear.

Many of the designs are modeled off her adult swimsuits with an emphasis on minimal fabric, low rise and plunging neckline.

The Collette Bikini on Hurley’s website is described as “great for girls who want to look grown up.” Despite the fact that it’s a bikini of scant proportions, parents are told to “rest assured” that their little girls are “still well covered”.

The Mini Cha Cha Bikini, designed for under 8s, is described as a choice that both teenagers and younger girls will love. There seems to be no contradiction in Hurley’s mind about marketing the same product to two very different age groups.

The lifestyle photography for the children’s swimwear is provocative and is styled on Hurley’s own lifestyle shoots, albeit without the ample bust.

For $79 a piece, parents might expect some vestige of sun protection, but it’s unlikely these little numbers will come with a rash vest.

No. Hurley is a business woman. There will be no fa├žade of modesty, safety or commonsense to cover these designs.

*Website accessed 18 September 2012 - www.elizabethhurley.com
© Eva Whiteley 2012

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Start Putting Children First

Submission to the Senate Community Affairs Committee
Regarding: Paid Parental Leave Scheme Bill 2010

Back in February when Abbott attempted to trump the Governments proposed Paid Parental Leave scheme, spokeswoman for the National Foundation for Australian Women, Marie Coleman praised the move, believing Australia lags behind the international community’s standard for paid leave and that six months is the minimum required after the birth of a new baby.

"Indeed the scientific data on child development and the need for parental bonding would suggest that 12 months would be ideal," Coleman said.


Despite Unicef’s recent warning that placing a baby in childcare before the age of 1 can lead to aggressive and anti-social behavior during primary school, the Government continues to award women who return to work and ignores the needs of the majority who choose to stay at home with their children.

According to leading child psychologist and parenting author, Steve Biddulph, children under the age of 3 should not be placed in institutionalized childcare, but should remain in the care of a close relative, as formal or institutionalized daycare situations can lead to separation anxiety, emotional vulnerability and stress.

So the Government continues to ignore the mounting evidence in favour of full-time parent-administered childcare during the formative years. And the Government continues to ignore the 79% of 18-34 year olds who, in a recent Galaxy poll, voted for equal funding for all mothers.

Considering that unwaged mothers represent the majority of those who receive financial assistance in the child-rearing years, one might have expected the Government to be slightly more concerned about where their votes are coming from.

Please abandon this discriminatory and detrimental scheme in favour of a universal childcare endowment which assists all families equally.

© Eva Whiteley 2010

Pornography = Negative Sex Education

Educators have finally begun to discuss the damaging effect of pornography on young people.

In their interviews with 140 young people, Dr David Corlett and Maree Crabbe found that violent, graphic and sexist pornography is being widely accessed by teenagers. Accessibility to pornography has been exacerbated by high internet usage, social media addiction and imported video games.

Corlett and Crabbe developed a documentary out of the interviews and hope to use it as proof that pornography provides “negative sex education”.

And with 92 per cent of boys and 61 per cent of girls between the age of 13 and 16 having viewed pornography online, it is Australia’s most dominant sex educator.

For years, educators have noticed and acknowledged disturbing increases in eating disorders, coerced underage sex and low self esteem. This research is the first major look at how pornography might be affecting the increase. 

© Eva Whiteley 2012