Vulnerable subjects and autonomous actors: The right to sexuality education for disabled under-18s



Daly, Aoife ORCID: 0000-0002-4005-9803, Heah, Rachel ORCID: 0000-0002-1348-5815 and Liddiard, Kirsty
(2019) Vulnerable subjects and autonomous actors: The right to sexuality education for disabled under-18s. Global Studies of Childhood, 9 (3). 235 - 248.

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Abstract

<jats:p> International human rights standards are clear that children and young people have a right to sexuality education. Nevertheless, the delivery of such education is often considered questionable, particularly for groups of children perceived as more ‘vulnerable’. In this article, the example of the right to access sexuality education for disabled children is used to explore the autonomy/vulnerability dynamic. Historically, sexuality education has been denied to disabled children, ostensibly to protect them from information and activities perceived as inappropriate due to their (perceived) greater vulnerabilities. It is argued, however, that discourses of sexual vulnerability can actually be dangerous in themselves. Sexuality education, rather than being a threat to disabled under-18s, serves as a way to increase their autonomy by equipping them with tools of knowledge around sex and relationships. This case study demonstrates how the autonomy of under-18s is not something inherent in them but something which can be enhanced through recognition of rights such as education and information, as well as recognition of adult responsibilities to facilitate this. </jats:p>

Item Type: Article
Depositing User: Symplectic Admin
Date Deposited: 30 Sep 2019 12:27
Last Modified: 28 Nov 2019 08:22
DOI: 10.1177/2043610619860997
Open Access URL: http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/150826/3/Daly%20et%...
URI: http://livrepository.liverpool.ac.uk/id/eprint/3056444
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