Marketing curbs possible for ‘sexy’ children’s products

By staff

‘Lolita’ beds and Playboy pencil cases are among the products facing a crackdown against the sexualisation of young people.

An independent inquiry chaired by Mothers’ Union chief executive Reg Bailey gets underway from today tasked with recommending what steps should be taken.

It follows concerns expressed by prime minister David Cameron in May that children are being subjected to “unnecessary and inappropriate commercialisation and sexualisation too young”.

The Mothers’ Union has been highlighting the issue with its ‘Bye Buy Childhood?’ campaign, suggesting Mr Bailey is unlikely to hold back as he assesses what curbs need to be introduced.

Children’s minister Sarah Teather said children faced “huge pressures” to buy “completely unsuitable” products.

“I know when I walk down the high street there is one shop after another marketing highly sexualised clothes to young children: short, tight dresses; T-shirts with unsuitable slogans,” she told the Sunday Times newspaper.

“Parents are under a tidal wave of pressure. There are all sorts of messages that bombard children and make them grow up quicker than parents want them to.”