An Australian mother of two has revealed she and her husband decided on a family rule after becoming parents - that no man would ever babysit their children.
In an opinion piece for Daily Life, author Kasey Edwards said the ban extended to male friends and relatives and they had not wavered from it in eight years.
‘Would I prefer to be a more chilled out parent? Absolutely,’ she wrote. ‘Will I change my family policy? Unfortunately no. Child sexual abuse is so prevalent that I won’t back down on my no-male-babysitters policy. Ms Edwards went on to clarify that she was not saying that all men are sexual predators and she does not think men ‘harbour predatory instincts’.
‘But child abuse by men is so common that taking precautions to keep my daughters safe is a no-brainer,’ she wrote.
Ms Edwards referenced an Australian Institute of Family Studies’ fact sheet titled Who Abuses Children.
The purpose of the fact sheet is described online as being to ‘provide an overview of the evidence available regarding those who abuse children’.
‘From the evidence available, it is clear that with the exception of child sexual abuse, children are most likely to be abused or neglected by parents and/or caregivers,’ it states.
‘Research suggests that child sexual abuse is perpetrated by a wider group of people, including parents, other relatives, siblings, friends, or others known to the child (e.g., sports coach, teacher, priest)’The fact sheet goes on to state: ‘Evidence overwhelmingly indicates that the majority of child sexual abuse is perpetrated by males.’
Ms Edwards wrote that she and her husband did not want to investigate the character of every man they knew to asses whether or not they were potential sexual predators.My husband and my decision is based on straightforward risk analysis: a cold, hard, unemotional reading of the statistical data,’ she wrote.
In 2014, Australian TV journalist Tracey Spicer made headlines when she wrote a piece saying she didn’t want her kids sitting next to a man on a flight.
‘I know it’s sexist. But I don’t want my kids sitting next to a man on a plane,’ she wrote.In 2012 Sydney fireman, John McGirr, wrote an online blog post after being asked to move from an airline seat next to two boys - estimated to be between the ages of eight and 10 years old.
Prior to take off, Mr McGirr was approached by a flight attendant, who asked him to move seats because the airline’s policy at the time stated that men could not sit next to unaccompanied minors.
‘The incident left me angry, embarrassed and acutely aware of how society has become fearful of everyone,’ Mr McGirr wrote. ‘To the point that we are all presumed guilty and treated appropriately.’