According to a new report, 95% of young people were not taught about LGBT sex or relationships as part of their sex education at school.
This report is the result of a study of 900 young people, conducted by the UK’s leading HIV and sexual health charity Terrence Higgins Trust. This same study also found that 97% of young people hadn’t been taught about sexual identity.
The UK’s current Sex and Relationships Education has been deemed “unfit” for the new generation by the THT, and has also shown concern that it could leave children vulnerable to abuse, poor sexual health and bullying.
The survey also looked at whether or not young people believe quality Sex and Relationships Education is needed, and 99% of people agreed, which made it all the more worrying that 89% did not learn about sex and pleasure 75% weren’t taught about consent.
97% of people studied agreed that Sex and Relationships education should be inclusive of LGBT people.
Chief Executive of Terrence Higgins Trust, Ian Green, had this to say: “Young people have now told us loud and clear what kind of SRE they want. The government must now give them the tools to make positive and informed decisions, and to have healthy relationships, which they are ready for and want – wherever they go to school, and whatever their sexuality.”
Their study also found that three out of five people didn’t remember or didn’t receive information on HIV at school. The THT also looked at young people’s overall feelings about the quality of sexual education they received.
Half of them rated it as ‘poor’ or ‘terrible’, while just 2% rated it ‘excellent’, and 10% rated it ‘good’.
Ian went on to say: “The government’s quiet blocking of compulsory SRE will condemn another generation of young people to leave school armed with little to no information on issues like LGBT relationships, gender identity and consent.”
“Without trusted information from schools on anything other than the biological basics of heterosexual sex, young people will turn to less reliable sources such as the internet or their peers as they navigate life outside the classroom. We must end this silence and make SRE mandatory in all schools if we are to tackle this safeguarding crisis.”
These findings are part of a new campaign for the Terrence Higgins Trust called SRE: End the Silence, and you can read more about that and the full study findings here.