Airbrushed adverts aimed at children should be banned – Swinson

Jo today called for airbrushing to be banned in adverts aimed at children and clearly indicated in those aimed at adults.

These measures are part of a wide range of proposals to protect women and girls against body image pressure and encourage healthier lifestyles. Other proposals include:

• Children to be protected from body image pressure by banning airbrushing in advertising aimed at under 16s

• Adverts aimed at adults to indicate clearly the extent to which they have been airbrushed or digitally enhanced

• Cosmetic surgery advertisements to give surgery success rates

• Modules on body image, health and well-being, and media literacy to be taught in schools

• Schools to include greater choice in physical activity to stop teenage girls dropping out of exercising

• Money to be invested in improving school and community sports facilities to make them cleaner, safer and more female-friendly

Commenting, Jo said:

“Today’s unrealistic idea of what is beautiful means that young girls are under more pressure now than they were even five years ago. Airbrushing mean that adverts contain completely unattainable images that no-one can live up to in real life.

“We need to help protect children from these pressures and we can make a start by banning airbrushing in adverts aimed at them.

“The focus on women’s appearance has got out of hand – no-one really has perfect skin, perfect hair and a perfect figure, but women and young girls increasingly feel that nothing less than thin and perfect will do.

“Liberal Democrats believe in the freedom of companies to advertise but we also believe in the freedom of young people to develop their self-esteem and to be as comfortable as possible with their bodies. They shouldn’t constantly feel the need to measure up to a very narrow range of digitally manipulated shapes and sizes.”

Jo leads the Liberal Democrats’ women’s policy group. The proposals form part of a policy paper entitled ‘Real Women’.

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