Sunday Mail

What teenagers learn about relationsh­ips – and what they wish they knew

- REBECCA BAKER

YOUNG South Australian­s are being sought to share their insights into how sex education is taught in schools.

Adelaide University PHD student Sophie Kedzior, in conjunctio­n with sexual health education service Shine SA, is researchin­g teenagers’ understand­ing of giving and receiving consent. It also wants to find out more on young peoples’ views about what makes a healthy relationsh­ip.

The study of youngsters aged 14 to 20 seeks to find the topics students feel are most important to include in relationsh­ips and sexual health education in high school.

“We are hoping that by talking with young people about their views and experience­s we can identify some of the common areas that are challengin­g for young people in their own relationsh­ips and in navigating discussion­s about consent,” Ms Kedzior said.

“(We also want to) explore what they learnt at school, as well as what they wish they had learnt about.

“We hope that the results will be used to better support young people to achieve healthy and respectful relationsh­ips, including ways to strengthen what is taught in schools and identify where more research with young people needs to be done.”

Schools or individual­s wishing to take part should email sophie.kedzior@adelaide.edu.au or visit Shine SA’S Facebook or Instagram

AN EX-NAVY officer who claims she was repeatedly raped while serving her country has accused Defence Chief Angus Campbell of using words that effectivel­y “give the green light to sexual predators”.

Midshipman Erin Brown was 17 when she joined the Royal Australian Navy in 2001.

Within a month, she lost her virginity to a more senior officer while on her first training cruise. Two more “unwanted sexual encounters” with fellow officers had her soon believing the “toxic culture of mistreatin­g women” was entrenched.

“After the first time I was raped, I tried to report it to a senior officer,” Ms Brown said.

“His response was that I only had myself to blame. He said I was a disgrace, that my father, also ex-navy, would be disgusted by me. It instilled such fear in me that I never spoke up again. His words did far more damage to my mental health than … the incidents.”

She told no one for 16 years and did not go public until

General Campbell told new recruits last month they should not fall victim to “four As: alcohol, out after midnight, alone, and attractive”.

Ms Brown said that was “giving a green light to any attacker who finds a victim to whom the ‘four As’ apply”. General Campbell said he would reply to a letter from Ms Brown. He said his intent had been “to … challenge the group to do what they can to mitigate risk and take action if they witness unacceptab­le behaviour”.

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