NSPCC – Close the Loophole Campaign

  • Currently sports coaches, faith leaders, and cadet leaders are legally allowed to have sex with 16 and 17-year olds they supervise
  • Ministry of Justice now reviewing legal loophole that allows adults to have sex with teenagers in their care
  • Almost 30 cross party MPs write to Justice Secretary David Gauke in support of NSPCC Close The Loophole campaign 

Steve has backed an NSPCC campaign to close a loophole that allows adults to have sex with teenagers they supervise.

Currently only people, such as teachers, social workers and youth justice workers are legally in a position of trust, which means it is a crime for them to have sex with the 16 or 17-year-olds they supervise.

Sports coaches, faith leaders, driving instructors, and cadet leaders, are amongst some of the roles that are legally allowed to have sex with teenagers they are responsible for.

The NSPCC has warned that this loophole leaves young people vulnerable to being groomed on the pitch, in places of worship, or other extracurricular settings.

The charity’s Close the Loophole campaign is calling for these laws to be extended to all adults with responsibility for young people, to stop children being preyed upon as soon as they turn 16.

Now the loophole is being reviewed by the Ministry of Justice, after Steve, along with 30 others, threw their weight behind the NSPCC’s demand.

The support came after nearly 3,000 NSPCC supporters called on their local MP to insist the Justice Secretary, David Gauke, make it illegal for adults to have sex with 16 and 17 year olds in their care.

Andrew Fellowes, NSPCC Public Affairs manager, said: “Most parents will probably be shocked that the adults they trust to supervise their teenagers can legally have sex with these children.

“It makes no sense that children are protected from predatory adults in some settings but not others. It’s good to see that Steve is as worried as we are and is demanding a change that will protect children.