A child is now 18 months old and parents are trying to decide when to tell their children that they’re legally able to have sex with anyone under 18.
But how old is too young to consent?
If you or someone you know is considering an abortion, it’s important to be aware of what your rights are when it comes to sex.
Read more about consent:Is it legal to have an abortion if I’m 16?
The short answer is no, according to the British Humanist Association (BHA).
But the BHA says the UK has very specific legislation and guidelines that apply to when a person can legally have sex.
Read moreWhat is the law on when a child can legally consent to sex?
The BHA points out that a 16-year-old can be legally allowed to have sexual intercourse with someone who is older than them and that a 17-year old can have sexual relations with someone they are legally responsible for.
Read MoreThe legal age of consent is 18 in the UK.
But if a parent or legal guardian gives consent, the legal age can be a lot older, according the BCA.
Under 18: Consent for sex is generally understood to be a positive act, and a parent should always be ready to take on the responsibility of being responsible for ensuring that their child is safe.
A 17- or 18-year year old can consent to sexual activity with anyone aged between 18 and the legal consent age.
However, in some circumstances, this may be too late.
For example, if a person is 16 and they have sex, the child might still be a minor, but they still need to be considered legally responsible if they have to move out of the house or change schools.
If a 17 year old has sex with someone aged under 18, the law is different and the law allows them to have some sex with the person under 18 at their own discretion.
In some circumstances that may be okay, but the BBA advises that in other circumstances the child should always have the final say.
For more information about consent, you can read more in the Baha’i Faith’s guide to child protection, where you can find advice about how to protect your children.
How do I get legal advice on sexual consent?
You can get legal help to answer your questions about consent.
Read moreAbout the author:Dr Sarah Williams is a psychologist who specialises in family law and child protection.
She is a member of the Bhaagalpur Commission for Children.
She previously worked in public health.
She blogs at childprotectionlaw.blogspot.com.