Sexting Laws Out of Step

Loddon Campaspe CLC echoes the concerns of the Parliamentary Law Reform Committee that found that current ‘sexting’ laws “miss the mark” because they fail to recognise that ‘sexting’ between young people is different to the sharing of images by paedophiles.

The Committee recommended several changes to the law in its ‘Inquiry into Sexting’ Report, launched on 29 May.

Our Principal Lawyer, Anna Howard, noted in a press release that “sexting amongst young people is commonplace but many are not aware that their actions are illegal. It’s important for young people to be aware of the legal and social implications of their actions, but also for the law to be relevant and to reflect contemporary values”.

The penalties for ‘sexting’ offences can be serious and currently include registration on the sex offenders register. “Criminal records of this kind can mark a young person for life and be a serious barrier to employment and international travel in the future. Equally, young people need to be aware of the social implications of sharing explicit images and information”.

Loddon Campaspe CLC hopes that the Government considers the recommendations of the Committee and makes appropriate amendments to the law.

In partnership with Victoria Legal Aid we developed ‘Sex and the Law’, a legal education program which aims to inform young people about issues regarding sex, sexting, and cyberbullying. The program can be delivered throughout the region. Anyone interested in the program should contact us on (03) 5444 4364 for further information.

 

Photo credit: garryknight / Foter.com / CC BY-SA

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