Labour Party TD for Dublin North Central Aodhán Ó Ríordáin has stated it is imperative that we stop the sexualisation and commercialisation of children in Ireland. Deputy Ó Ríordáin also stated that this must be a priority for the new Minister for Children Frances Fitzgerald.
Deputy Ó Ríordáin was speaking on foot of a reply from Minister Fitzgerald to a Parliamentary Question he submitted to the Department of Children.
"I greatly welcome the reply from Minister Fitzgerald which indicated that her department is evaluating the recent publication Letting Children Be Children which investigated this issue thoroughly. This report, which was commissioned by the coalition government in the United Kingdom, made numerous recommendations which I believe have some merit.
"Among them the report recommends:
- Putting age restrictions on music videos
- Making it easier for parents to block age-restricted material from the internet
- Ensuring retailers offer age appropriate clothing for children
- Restricting outdoor advertisements containing sexualised imagery where children are likely to see it
"Given the enormous level of sexualisation and commercialisation of our children at the present time, I believe this warrants a similar study to be conducted by the Department of Children. By undertaking such a study, we could assess how best to protect some of the most vulnerable people in this society."