This week on the HJ Talks About Abuse podcast, Alan and Danielle are joined by Tom Farr, from CEASE UK to discuss the topic of pornography.
CEASE stands for Centre To End All Sexual Exploitation. It was set up in 2019 with a core belief “To end sexual exploitation in all its ugly forms, we have to understand what’s driving it. That meant digging down deep to expose the two main root causes of sexual exploitation”:
CEASE focus on two points of why exploitation continues:
- OUR CULTURE; CEASE believes one of the biggest causes of sexual exploitation is the fact that we as a culture have made it completely normal to view people (and especially women) as sex objects not human beings. It’s much easier to harm someone if you see them as a ‘thing’
- TWO: PROFIT CEASE believes humans have turned sex into a saleable commodity – and it’s big business. The international sex trade and the global porn industry are worth billions.
One of CEASE’s aims is to tackle the cultural and commercial forces behind exploitation.
CEASE aims to raise awareness of what sexual exploitation is, where it occurs and how it contravenes our Human Rights by campaigning for better law and policy change. They aim to do this by working with organisations and individuals.
The three areas which can be explored in detail on the website are, pornography, prostitution and the wider sex industry.
One of CEASE’s focuses is on how pornography has become normalised leading to exploitation CEASE list the following stances;
- PORNOGRAPHY IS A ‘PUBLIC HEALTH CRISIS’ OF THE DIGITAL AGE.
- THE PORN INDUSTRY IS EXPLOITATIVE AND UNREGULATED.
- PROSTITUTION IS FUNDAMENTALLY EXPLOITATIVE.
- VICTIMS AND SURVIVORS OF SEXUAL EXPLOITATION SHOULD HAVE THE FULL SUPPORT OF THE LAW TO REBUILD THEIR LIVES.
- HUMAN TRAFFICKING AND PROSTITUTION ARE INTRINSICALLY LINKED.
- THE COMMERCIAL SEX INDUSTRY PUTS CHILDREN AT RISK OF SEXUAL ABUSE AND EXPLOITATION.
- HYPERSEXUALISATION IN MEDIA AND WIDER CULTURE IS AN UNDERLYING DRIVER OF CHILD SEX ABUSE & EXPLOITATION.
CEASE campaign to raise awareness how pornography can be racist and how it can hurt children and relationships. Concerns highlighted which can flow from pornography include physical and psychological violence, exploitation, rape, addiction and homelessness.
Prostitution in the UK is not illegal. However, in an attempt to mitigate the harm and risks associated with it, the UK government has criminalised more than 30 associated activities, including: soliciting sex on the street; kerb crawling; advertising using cards in telephone boxes; causing / inciting prostitution or controlling it for personal gain (i.e. pimping); brothel-keeping; and the buying of sex from trafficked individuals. The UK law around prostitution is complicated and, for this reason, there have been various calls for reform.
Wider Sex Industry
CEASE also raise awareness of sugar daddy dating, stripping, webcamming and the shallows (putting one foot into the sex industry whilst also trying to maintain a normal life)
CEASE have been running the AVNOW campaign to raise awareness of age verification on porn sites to prevent the harm we have already outlined above and children’s images being used.
Facts states by CEASE state by the UK Government’s own reckoning, 1.4 million children access pornography every month from a young age of 7 or so and over 60% of this accidental – campaigning for age verification is therefore vital
CEASE list in June 2021 another law suit was filed in the USA against Pornhub and its parent company Mindgeek that have been found to have hosted, and profited from, videos of child sexual exploitation, rape, trafficking, and otherwise non-consensually shared footage and images. This time, victims of non-consensual image sharing have filed the case because, as USA Today reports, they ““were ignored, shamed, and sometimes mocked” when they asked MindGeek to remove videos of their abuse from its porn platform.”
CEASE are also crown fundraising, threatening to bring a legal case against the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) for failing to protect children’s data from misuse by porn sites. This exposes children to more hardcore and harmful content. Help us call on the Information.
CEASE highlights, these sites are now processing and using the data of children, and the authorities who have the power and competency to investigate them have not.
More information can be found here: Home - CEASE / Centre to End All Sexual Exploitation
We encourage anyone who has concerns about sexual abuse to get in touch. You can contact Alan Collins at Alan.email@example.com or Danielle Vincent at Danielle.firstname.lastname@example.org