3 Easy Ways to Advocate for a Public Health Response to Porn [Canada]

3 Easy Ways to Advocate for a Public Health Response to Porn [Canada]

Summer vacation here we come! Read on to find out how you can advocate for a public health response to porn, while still enjoying your summer holiday.  If you are like me, you are looking very forward to a break in routine. Who doesn’t love the carefree days of summer? Perhaps you have a cross-country vacation planned or a bunch of local events to attend with the fam-jam. Maybe there are even days that you plan to do nothing at all! (I hope so). One thing is for sure —NO MORE SCHOOL LUNCHES! Whoo-hoo!  Exploring new possibilities Along with taking it easy, each summer I also like to get a few small tasks crossed off my To-Do list —the things I never seem to have time for during the school year. This summer I hope to explore some new options for the Parents Aware site. As such, you may notice a drop in the frequency of our posts of our posts over the summer. Not to worry,...
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Act Now! 120 Days to Influence Government Policy on Porn

Act Now! 120 Days to Influence Government Policy on Porn

What would YOU do? If you were in a position to issue recommendations to the Canadian government you knew would significantly diminish the risk of childhood exposure to violent and sexually degrading content, would you? My guess is that 90% of people would be 100% in support of this. And yet the Standing Committee on Health has decidedly chosen not to concern themselves with the health of children —nor for that matter the culture of violence against women as it pertains to unrestricted access to all forms of pornography. The long anticipated results of the M-47 study are in and they are absolutely deflating. Mandated to examine public health effects As you may recall, the committee was mandated to examine the public health effects of the ease of access and viewing of online violent and degrading sexually explicit material on children, women and men. This study had incredible potential to lead out as the defining report to help inform future government policy in this...
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Past Due: Canada’s Cultural Shift Against Porn

Past Due: Canada’s Cultural Shift Against Porn

The Standing Committee on Health concluded hearings on the public health effects of violent pornography on Children, Women and Men (M-47). The following is a summary information most relevant to the conversations at Parents Aware. At what cost? “The fact that a kid can log onto the Internet to do a book report and accidentally come across pornography is the cost of doing business in the Internet age.”   This was Dr. William Fisher’s derisive response when asked by Arnold Viersen if he believed “children exposed to sexually explicit material is child abuse?” Fisher continued, “there’s no question but that sexual abuse of children is a crime … as to whether a child coming across this material is a form of child abuse, I would wait to see if it has very negative consequences.” Dr. Kim Roberts has already played the wait-and-see game. As a forensic psychologist, she knows it's consequences. (In Canada successful prosecution rates for child abuse are as low as 2%). To avoid getting...
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Celebrate International Women’s Day: #Be Bold For Change

Celebrate International Women’s Day: #Be Bold For Change

As International Women’s Day is celebrated in our communities and throughout social media today organizers are asking that we consider what we can do to move society towards greater gender parity. A recent report from the World Economics Forum predicts that, “the gender gap will not close entirely until 2186”. We think that is too long. Showing your support for International Women’s Day is one way to raise awareness and become a vehicle for change. #EqualityMatters #BeBoldForChange At Parents Aware we can’t think of a better way to champion the cause of women worldwide than to be like our young friend in the following true story. 12-year-old speaks out against pornography It’s 11 am Sunday morning, when most boys his age would be home sleeping or playing their favourite video game. Instead Samuel (name changed) is at church, sharply dressed in a suit and tie. It is what he does every Sunday. Only this Sunday, Samuel appears even more remarkable. Today, at the invitation...
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Declaring Porn a Public Health Crisis: Canada’s Opportunity with M-47

Declaring Porn a Public Health Crisis: Canada’s Opportunity with M-47

That the Standing Committee on Health be instructed to examine the public health effects of the ease of access and viewing of online violent and degrading sexually explicit material on children, women and men ... and that the said Committee report its findings to the House no later than July 2017.     —Motion, M-47 As promised, ParentsAware is here to provide regular updates on the progress of the recently adopted Parliamentary Motion, M-47. MP Arnold Veirsen introduced this Motion (March 8, 2016) and continues to be at the forefront of this issue. Here’s what we know today: Since the adoption of Motion M-47 by Parliament (Dec 9, 2016), M-47 technically no longer exists. As a result of the adoption of Motion M-47, the Health Committee is now required to undertake a study on pornography. Because Motion M-47 included a date of July 2017 by which the study had to be completed, the Health Committee is moving very quickly on this issue. To ensure that this...
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Act Now! M-47 Gives Parents A Voice Against the Porn Industry

Act Now! M-47 Gives Parents A Voice Against the Porn Industry

Victory In Canada!  This is the subject line of an email I received just a few days before the holiday break. The email continued to explain that a Private Member's Bill, Motion M-47 (the Online Sexual Violence Motion), had just been unanimously adopted in the House of Commons. I couldn’t believe my eyes! For anyone who considers pornography a public health concern, this is BIG news. I wondered how I had missed hearing about it locally and scrambled to search online newspapers for the story. The papers were silent. Confused, I called the MP’S office from which the motion originated to plead for further information about the victory the press seemed reluctant to cover. Here’s what I learned: [Be sure to read to the end of this article and find out how your voice will ensure that Motion M-47 has the best possible chance of creating greater public awareness about the dangers of pornography.] What is Motion M-47? I discovered that Alberta MP, Arnold Viersen...
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Do Schools Encourage Students to view Pornography?

Do Schools Encourage Students to view Pornography?

When Gary Wilson described internet pornography “as the fastest moving, most global experiment ever unconsciously conducted” he was spot on. Our school system, as it stands now, is unwittingly encouraging students to join the experiment! Hold on to your seat because it’s time for me to rant! Please imagine I am shouting this entire post though I will spare you the ALL CAPS! More and more research is confirming that porn tops the list of highly addictive substances. It has the ability to rewire the brain and deteriorate growth in the prefrontal cortex. Children are especially vulnerable. Yet, schools remain unwilling to give students a basic definition of pornography, teach them why it is harmful, or give them tools and strategies to help them reject pornography when they are exposed to it. Here are a few of the points that should be acknowledged by school boards when developing curriculum: The brain responds to pornography similar to the way it responds to hard drugs. Overcoming pornography...
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