Senate of Canada
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0A4
The EFC is pleased to support Bill S-203 An Act to restrict young persons’ online access to sexually explicit materials
. This bill will require commercial pornography sites to verify that consumers are adults in order to access their content. Such accountability is urgently needed.
Mainstream pornography frequently depicts violent, degrading and dehumanizing sexual content. This content is freely and easily accessible by children and youth. We know kids are being exposed to this abusive content at increasingly younger ages, when they lack the ability to understand or process what they are seeing.
Online pornography has become the primary sex educator of young people today. A growing body of research tells us that widespread access to and use of online pornography contribute to a broad range of harms, particularly to minors. Its impact on child psychosocial and sexual development and the way it is shaping sexual attitudes, behaviours and preferences, as well as the increase in compulsive behaviour and addiction related to viewing online pornography, constitute a public health crisis.
Further, the proliferation and widespread consumption of online pornography fuels other forms of sexual exploitation, such as prostitution and human trafficking, and contributes to rape culture.
Bill S-203 is an important initiative to set up crucial protection for minors from the harms of exposure to online pornography. We commend your efforts in bringing it forward and we will support its progression.
I would appreciate the opportunity to meet with you to discuss this initiative further.
Director, Public Policy
Author: Julia Beazley