Survey Suggests Scottish Children Are Not That Savvy About Sex Education

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6th November 2013 12:54 - Education

New research carried out by Ipsos Mori Young People Omnibus Survey has revealed that worryingly twenty seven per cent of pupils believe that when a girl refuses consent to sex she does not always mean it. The poll of over 1,000 pupils in Scotland also found that a third of teenagers don’t know the dangers associated with sharing needles. Furthermore almost 20% don’t realise that they can avoid contracting a sexually transmitted infection (STI) by using a condom.

Although four fifths (80%) of children remembered being taught about the dangers of illegal drugs, avoiding STIs and safe sex, only two-thirds said they were taught about how to say no to sex and how to avoid catching HIV. Students recalled being taught about Hepatitis C, with 40% saying they remembered this. When students were presented with a statement “when a girl says no to sex, she always means no", 73% of pupils said it was definitely or probably true. The survey went on to find that 89% agreed that a person could change their mind about having sex at any time, even if they had previously consented to it.

Heather Coady, Head of Children’s Policy at Scottish Women’s Aid, said:

“This speaks volumes about attitudes towards sex that are played out day in, day out, and which normalise all kinds of unwanted sexual behaviour... It is one of the most prevalent rape myths - the belief that a woman was 'asking for it' and no really means yes. We need to start listening to young people and addressing the issues that are important to them if we are to enable them to have healthy, respectable relationships."

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