Professionals tell fpa of barriers to sex for learning disabled

Almost all professionals polled by fpa (the Family Planning Association) believe that people with learning disabilities face barriers to sex and relationships.

The finding was published today as fpa launched a campaign to raise awareness of the rights of people with learning disabilities to have sex and relationships, to coincide with this year’s Sexual Health Week.

The organisation surveyed people with learning disabilities and 78 professionals who work with the group for the It’s my right campaign, which is backed by a series of posters designed to challenge perceptions that people with learning disabilities are not sexual beings.

Research by fpa has found that too often people with learning disabilities are denied information, education and the opportunity to pursue relationships.

To fill this gap, it has produced an interactive CD-ROM called All about us on sex, sexual orientation and relationships for people with mild to moderate learning disabilities. 

Julie Bentley, fpa chief executive, said: “Information and skills must be available to people with learning disabilities so they can enjoy intimate relationships without putting themselves at risk.”

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