Girl Scouts of America: ‘Don’t Force Your Kids to Show Physical Affection to Family This Holiday Sea
The Girl Scouts of America have a warning to parents and children about holiday hugs with family members.
The Girl Scouts say that not forcing children to show physical affection to relatives instills the idea of consent at an early age, and sexual assault advocates say it's a good lesson to learn as early as possible.
...“When we talk about preventing sexual assault long-term in our community, a lot of early prevention work with, especially, younger kids has to do with bodily autonomy, that their body is their own, that no one has the right to touch it without consent, and they don’t have the right to touch anybody else’s without consent,” said Kerri True-Funk, Associate Director of the Iowa Coalition Against Sexual Assault.
Iowa CASA says that with over 90% of child sexual abuse being perpetrated by someone known to the child, these lessons can help prevent it not just in the future, but this year, as well.
“It’s not strangers jumping out of vans, it’s very much people that the kids know, they have some sort of level of trust with. And so when we’re talking about not having kids be forced to have physical contact with people that they’re uncomfortable with, it also tells them that they have the right to say no and that if somebody is going to push that boundary, that it’s not right,” said True-Funk.