Mothers’ Union Chief Exec to review commercialisation of children

On Friday I posted some responses and questions that came from my recent presentation about issues raised by theMothers’ Union Bye Buy Childhood Campaign.

On Sunday, The Telegraph ran a story announcing that the Mothers’ Union Chief

Reg Bailey - Chief Exec Mothers' Union (photographed Romsey 2007)

Executive, Reg Bailey will be heading up a government-commissioned review of issues surrounding the commercialisation and sexualisation of children:

Mr Bailey’s review will gather evidence of ways children are having unfair commercial pressure put on them or being “prematurely sexualised” by retailers amid protests over high-heeled shoes and provocative underwear aimed at girls as young as 10.

This news has been confirmed today to me in emails from staff at Mary Sumner House, via the Department of Education website, and it featured on BBC News. I’ve even had visitors call round at my house just to make sure I know!

The Department of Education’s website states that

The review will look at the following themes:

  • risks of harm and barriers to parenting
  • principles – what is acceptable in this area and what is not
  • consumer voice
  • corporate social responsibility.

I’ve met Reg Bailey several years running at Mothers’ Union conferences and other events, and know how passionate he’s been for years about making a real, but realistic difference to the problems that some products or their marketing cause. I’m sure he’ll take a balanced view and make an excellent job of this important task.


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