Mother backs TV Research Dominion Post 6/11/08 by Greer McDonald
The mother of a 14-year old who viewed footage of rape and domestic violence for research has defended the study and says children see worse on news broadcasts.
Dawn Bunker, of Wanganui, said she gave consent for her son to take part in the research and believed he didn’t see anything that wasn’t age-appropriate”.
“I feel it was well worthwhile and done professionally, and at no time felt he could not cope with what he was shown. As he himself put it – ‘You see worse on the TV news, Mum.'”
Mrs Bunker was offended by comments from Bob McCoskrie, of lobby group Family First, who said this week that the fact that parents had consented to their children taking part “says something about the parents”.
Mrs Bunker, a mother of three, said parents had to be censors in their own homes. “Some of the things you see on the news, I’ve kicked my kids out of the room – I’m censoring my children myself, I know what they can handle.”
She said chief censor Bill Hastings was doing a good job.
However, a community lobby group has called for he resignations of Mr Hastings and Dominic Sheehan, chief executive of the Broadcasting Standards Authority, for whose agencies the research was conducted.
John Mills, president of the Society for the Promotion of Community Standards, said Mr Hastings showed appalling judgment. “the society is outraged Mr Hastings has defended his breaking of the law by claiming that, because the younger participants gained parental permission before they they took part in the research, then that was okay.”