Porn petition handed to Parliament

A 22,000-signature petition calling for an investigation into the public health effects and societal harms of pornography has been handed to Parliament.

Clinical psychologist Rebecca Daly-Peoples is welcoming the petition.

She says children as young as 11 are being exposed to pornography online, and the accessibility promotes sexual abuse.

"The majority of young people believe that what they see in pornography is what real relationships are like, and they're not actually able to distinguish or know those are actors and it's designed to target a particular kind of audience."

She says sexual abuse in schools will become more common if a plan to regulate pornography is not developed.

"The images are more and more graphic, increasingly brutal, and certainly subjugate women. If young men are watching that, that's what they expect. There's all kinds of horror stories where young people are engaging in sexual activity that they really don't feel comfortable about."

She says pornography normalises abusive attitudes, and while it's all very well to tell young men they shouldn't think like that about women that gets undermined by the media they're consuming. Family First is behind the petition.

Director Bob McCoskrie says research shows "children who are exposed to pornography develop skewed ideas about sex and sexuality, which lead to negative stereotypes of women, sexual activity at a young age, and increased aggression in boys.

"It also places unacceptable pressure on young girls which leads to eating disorders, body dissatisfaction, low self-esteem, depression, and other harms."

The petition was recieved by MPs from all major parties.

In 2016, Canada's Parliament unanimously agreed on an investigation into the public health effects of pornography.

Newshub.