Youth asked about dark side of ads
Youth asked about dark side of ads

From sexy images of girls in magazines to advertisements glamorising alcohol, WA Commissioner for Children and Young People Michelle Scott has warned that media and advertising have a powerful, sometimes detrimental, influence on children.

Ms Scott said there was widespread concern among parents and professionals that the sexualisation of children and youths in Australia was increasing and the impact on their health and development needed more investigation.

"Body image problems, eating disorders and depression are just some of the emotional and psychological costs of an increasingly sexualised environment," she said.

"A key focus for research is how sexualisation in the media and advertising can be minimised and better regulated to protect Western Australia's children and young people."

Ms Scott said another concern was the advertising and promotion of alcohol after research showed it was a key influence on young people's drinking behaviour, including binge drinking.

She said alcohol advertising reached most children and young people.

Ms Scott said this week she wanted to hear the views of children aged 10 to 15 about the impact of the media and advertising on their lives.

This year she will pick one of them to be commissioner for a day when they will be able to put their views directly to WA's decisionmakers.

Last year's winner, Codee-Lee Down, 17, met Youth Minister Robyn McSweeney and Governor Malcolm McCusker. She also visited the Drug and Alcohol Office to discuss how to reduce alcohol-related harm.

For more information about the commissioner for a day competition, see <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.ccyp.wa.gov.au">www.ccyp.wa.gov.au </a>

The West Australian

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