Marshall: Let 13-year-olds have sex

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Scotland's children's commissioner is calling for the age of consent to be lowered to 13 for sexual partners of similar ages. Kathleen Marshall thinks 13 to 15-year-olds who have sex with each other should not be criminalised. Over-16s who have sex with a minor could still be prosecuted under her proposal, backed by the Family Planning Association, the Scottish Children's Reporter Administration, Barnados and the Brook Advisory Service. [...]

The Christian Institute said decriminalisation would be "extremely damaging", undermining the work of 19th century reformers such as Josephine Butler, whose 18-year campaign to raise the age of consent from 12 to 16 was realised in 1885. It said: "The recommendations are reckless and wrong. They would strip away essential legal protection for children."

source: Article 'Marshall: Let 13-year-olds have sex' by Tom Gordon; www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk/scotland/article3908958.ece; Times Online; 11 May 2008