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February 2024: Sex Education in the News

Culture Reframed is the premier science-based, global organization working to stop the emotional, behavioral, and sexual harms of pornography to children and youth. Join our online community to receive updates on our work, announcements of upcoming events, and the latest news related to pornography and youth.

Earlier this month, CEOs from the biggest social media platforms — TikTok, Meta, X, Snapchat, and Discord — testified at a U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee hearing about the platforms’ dangerous influence on young people — including bullying, sexual predation, and more.

This came shortly after sexually explicit artificial intelligence-produced images of superstar Taylor Swift dominated the internet and global news headlines. The deepfake pornographic images were viewed tens of millions of times. Finally, this very serious issue that has been harming women and children for years is receiving the attention it deserves.

It is too soon to know what changes may arise from these incidents, but we’re hopeful they will lead to better protection for young people.

You can find a plethora of resources for parents and educators on our site to help you guide young people to develop safe digital habits, navigate social media, and understand the harms of pornography.

 

– Nechama Katz

Director of Foundation Relations, Culture Reframed

 

Front-Line Healthcare Professionals Discuss the Influence of Pornography on Young People

In a recent Culture Reframed virtual panel presentation, front-line healthcare professionals Louise Barraclough, RGN, MA, Joshua Bissell, MSW, and Heidi Olson, MSN, RN, CPN, SANE-P, described how pornography grooms children in a myriad of harmful ways. The stories and examples of sexual abuse cases they shared help bring to life the alarming statistics and trends regarding pornography exposure among children. Read the summary and watch the full presentation here.

Watch Now: All sessions from our recent conference are now streaming!

If you missed the recent Culture Reframed virtual conference, “The Impact of Pornography on Young People: Research, Practice & Solutions,” all videos are now streaming on our YouTube page. The conversations feature experts from multiple fields, including doctors, psychologists, and front-line child protection professionals, sharing emerging research and firsthand experience identifying pornography consumption as a driver of child sexual abuse.

Sessions include:

  • Culture Reframed and CACs: Working Together to Support Child Victims of Abuse with Dr. Amelia Siders
  • The Connection Between Social Media, Gaming, and Porn and the Harms to Youth with Dr. Mandy Sanchez
  • Understanding Porn’s Impact on Sexual Violence in the Lives of Black Girls with Dr. Carolyn West

Sex Education in the News

recent article in USA Today explores the growing threat of sex education restrictions in schools. Throughout the United States, lawmakers, parents, and educators are debating the need for sex ed. Last year, eight states issued laws restricting it, representing an 800% jump in restrictive legislation from 2022, according to the Sexuality Information and Education Council of the United States. More states are expected to follow their lead this year.

While restrictions spread in some states, the opposite is happening elsewhere. Other states are moving to protect sex ed, especially in light of the overturning of Roe v. Wade. Ten states last year passed laws to require a sex ed curriculum for young students.

Age-appropriate, comprehensive sex education is critical to the well-being of young people. Without it, youth learn from the resources available to them — most commonly, porn, a source that does not provide accurate or safe information.

To address the need, we’ve created a cutting-edge sex education curriculum with a porn-critical lens. It incorporates key information about the harmful effects of easily accessible pornography, guiding learners to develop authentic, healthy, safe, and rewarding relationships.

 

Hear from Gail

How dangerous is porn, really?

Culture Reframed Founder & President Dr. Gail Dines was interviewed in a new article from Tangle about the harmful impacts of pornography on boys: “The whole of the industry has shifted. You used to have softcore, medium, hardcore. Now these free tube sites are virtually only carrying hardcore. So this 11-year-old boy, his first sexual experience is cruel, body-punishing violent, misogynistic imager. That’s how he’s developing his sexual template.”

  • March 13 at 4:00 p.m. ET: Dr. Mandy Sanchez joins Digital4Good’s webinar, “Hypersexualized & Pornified Social Media & Gaming.” Learn more and register here.
  • March 21: Dr. Mandy Sanchez featured as a plenary speaker at the Child Abuse Council
  • April 12: Dr. Gail Dines and Dr. Mandy Sanchez present at the California Central Valley CAC Child Abuse Prevention Conference

 

What Others Are Saying

‘Your Product Is Killing People’: Tech Leaders Denounced Over Child Safety (New York Times)

Senators criticized the chief executives of Meta, TikTok, Snap, X, and Discord for not doing enough to prevent child sexual abuse online, amid rising fears over how the platforms affect youth. Read now.

It’s Not Just Taylor Swift—All Women Are at Risk From the Rise of Deepfakes (Glamour)

AI technology is rapidly spinning out of control, and women are bearing the brunt of it. Read now.

Democrats Revive Bill Requiring Public Schools to Teach About Contraception (WPR)

Wisconsin Democrats are trying to revive legislation that would require schools to teach comprehensive sex education. Read now.

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