Viewing Pornography through a Children’s Rights Lens
Sexual Addiction & Compulsivity: The Journal or Treatment & Prevention (2019), doi:10.1080/10720162.2019.1578311
28 Pages Posted: 12 Feb 2019
Date Written: August 1, 2018
Recent research related to childhood exposure to pornography suggests that some children may be harmed by the exposure, which raises legal issues in light of the international legal framework that obligates most nations to implement a domestic legal framework of protection and care for children. When a country fails to adequately protect a child from harm in violation of the child’s rights and the child has exhausted domestic remedies, a new complaint procedure is now available through the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child. That communications procedure has not yet been utilized by any child (or advocate) arguing harmful exposure to pornography. This article briefly summarizes representative research suggesting a relationship between childhood exposure to pornography and subsequent harm, outlines international children’s rights that may be implicated by exposure that proves harmful, and highlights some of the legal protections and remedies that are currently being explored before arguing that the new complaint procedure should be considered as a new forum for redress that could bring international attention to this growing issue.
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