Anger over new Sun page 3 cam­paign

The Church of England - - FRONT PAGE - By Amaris Cole

THE EVAN­GEL­I­CAL AL­LIANCE has joined the cam­paign to pe­ti­tion The Sun news­pa­per to re­move its top­less page three mod­els.

The Chris­tian or­gan­i­sa­tion, which rep­re­sents two mil­lion mem­bers across the UK, joins 135,000 sup­port­ers to back the re­moval of naked women on the tabloid’s pages.

The lat­est move by The Sun, of us­ing Page 3 in the name of breast cancer aware­ness, with the ‘Check ‘Em Tues­day’ cam­paign, is also crit­i­cised by com­men­ta­tors.

The Gen­eral Di­rec­tor of the Al­liance, Steve Clif­ford, said: “There is no way hav­ing naked women fea­tured in a ‘fam­ily’ news­pa­per can be seen as good for so­ci­ety.”

Head of sup­porter re­la­tions, Sue Wil­mot, who will shortly be un­der­go­ing re­con­struc­tive surgery fol­low­ing suc­cess­ful treat­ment for breast cancer, said: “As a breast cancer sur­vivor, I am pas­sion­ate about rais­ing aware­ness among women both within and out­side the Church of the im­por­tance of per­form­ing reg­u­lar checks.

“While I hope many women will be re­minded of this through The Sun’s cam­paign, I am con­cerned about the tac­tics the news­pa­per has used and their at­tempts to re-brand their in­creas­ingly un­pop­u­lar page 3 girl fea­ture. I hope that they might re­spond to the re­ac­tion from our mem­bers and thou­sands of oth­ers by no longer us­ing these over-sex­u­alised im­ages of young women.”

The Al­liance adds that evan­gel­i­cal Chris­tians be­lieve that we are all made in the im­age of God and that our bod­ies are a prod­uct of God’s amaz­ing de­sign, not to be ogled at or ob­jec­ti­fied.

Mr Clif­ford added that they ‘recog­nise that his­tor­i­cally the Church has not al­ways been great at ad­vo­cat­ing for women, but given its re­cent de­fi­ance it is a time for us to tell The Sun news­pa­per that enough is enough’.

“We be­lieve in the in­her­ent dig­nity of all hu­man be­ings and are pas­sion­ate about work­ing to­gether for a so­ci­ety that says no to ob­jec­ti­fi­ca­tion.”

The Girls’ Bri­gade has pre­vi­ously writ­ten to David Dins­more, edi­tor of The Sun, fol­low­ing a sur­vey that found 70 per cent of their mem­bers thought Page 3 had a neg­a­tive im­pact on their self-es­teem.

Ruth Gil­son, ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of Girls’ Bri­gade In­ter­na­tional and vice-chair of the Evan­gel­i­cal Al­liance board, said: “We dream of a day in which girls and women are not ob­jec­ti­fied and where they are not mea­sured solely on how ‘sexy’ they are. We call on The Sun to ditch its poor at­ti­tude to­wards women and com­mit to high­light­ing the equal­ity of the sexes.”

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