Lysanne Currie: 'Our magazine takes a very responsible attitude to sex'

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The Independent Online

We don't need an age stamp. This subject came up about eight years ago when the Tory MP Peter Luff discussed it in the House of Commons. The solution was the Teenage Magazine Arbitration Panel. The panel has now been going for eight years and I don't think we need any other form of regulation.

We don't need an age stamp. This subject came up about eight years ago when the Tory MP Peter Luff discussed it in the House of Commons. The solution was the Teenage Magazine Arbitration Panel. The panel has now been going for eight years and I don't think we need any other form of regulation.

Sugar is a very broad magazine aimed at 12- to 18-year-olds - the average is 14 and a half. We get about 1,000 letters a week and 500 of those are about sex. There's an awful lot of misinformation going on.

The message that goes all the way through our magazine is that sex is illegal under 16, you should only have sex within a loving relationship, and you should never have unprotected sex.

I don't think the people who are making these criticisms read Sugar, or they would say how responsible the coverage is. This sort of attitude is patronising. We meet teenagers every week and they say that just because they read this information doesn't mean they are going to go out and have sex.

I don't think children under 12 read the magazine. At that age they are quite media sussed. There are an awful lot of magazines out there, and they read the ones that relate to them.

The girls who feature in our magazine are 14, 15, 16 years old - you're not going to get a 10-year-old child reading that.

Lysanne Currie is editorial director of Sugar magazine

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