JIS News

Story Highlights

  • Senator Falconer has again stated her intention to push for the age of consent to be raised from 16 to 18 years.
  • The Minister made the comments while addressing a Western Region joint Government/ Civil Society/ NGO sensitization session.
  • She believes that raising the age of consent will help to counteract the country's high rate of teenage pregnancy.

Minister with responsibility for Information in the Office of the Prime Minister, Senator the Hon. Sandrea Falconer, has again stated her intention to push for the age of consent to be raised from 16 to 18 years.

“I think as a country, the time has come for us to look at the age of consent. If you cannot vote until you are age 18 years, you cannot legally drink until you are age 18 years, why then should our 16 year old girls or boys be allowed to have sex. I do not think they should be allowed to consent, because at that time they are not equipped to make decisions,” she stated.

The Minister made the comments while addressing a Western Region joint Government/ Civil Society/ Non-Government Organization sensitization session on Caribbean Gender Equality held on February 27 in the Montego Bay Civic Centre in Sam Sharpe Square, Montego Bay.

She believes that raising the age of consent will help to counteract the country’s high rate of teenage pregnancy, and address the breakdown of morals in the society. The Minister said that too many children are having children, which they not equipped to care for.

This, she said, is leading to a breakdown in the family structure and fueling the country’s crime problem.

The Minister said that as a country “we need to look at ourselves as we move towards 2030 and decide on the kind of Jamaica we want”.

She noted that while the Government’s role is to set policies and provide resources, it cannot “come into families and help you to train your children in the right and proper way. That is the role of a parent.”