Recent figures released by NHS Digital and reported in the national press reveal that in the past two years 10,593 contraceptive implants have been given to schoolgirls below the age of 15 – some even as young as 12 – without their parents’ knowledge or consent.
This is wrong at a number of levels:
- Although sexual activity from puberty onwards has become common,the legal age for consent in this country remains 16, which means that sex below this age is a criminal offence. The policy of giving contraceptive implants to underage girls, without their parents’ knowledge or consent, is therefore encouragement to commit a criminal offence.
- Underage sexual activity exposes children to a range of STIs, currently already at epidemic levels amongst young people.Many of these infections (such as gonorrhoea) are becoming increasingly untreatable, and some are life threatening.
- Short of disease, there are a variety of highly unpleasant side effects resulting from hormonal manipulation, ranging from weight gain and acne to the risk of adult infertility and embolism.
- The long-term effects of such intervention are still unknown, but there is already established susceptibility to adult infertility (mentioned above) and cancer.
- Rendering girls ‘infertile’ for a period of up to three years can only increase their susceptibility to sexual abuse and exploitation, leaving predators free to rape them without fear of repercussions.This in turn means that identifying child victims and acting to keep them safe will become far more difficult. All of which has justly led to this policy being called State facilitation of rape.
At every level this is wrong. Children can never ‘belong’ to the State, and they should not be subjected to State sexualisation programmes designed to justify adult proclivities and desires.
FACT: Parents have a right and duty to protect their child.
FACT: Children’s brains are not fully developed until the age of 25. They lack the emotional and intellectual maturity to make life-changing decisions.
CONCLUSION: Parents must be fully informed and consulted on all decisions affecting the future development and welfare of their child. They, and they alone, have the right and duty to make such decisions on their child’s behalf.
For all these reasons, we call for a total ban on the insertion of contraceptive implants in underage girls without their parents’ knowledge and written consent.