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Girls Paying For School With Sex

By DANA SMITH

dsmith@tribunemedia.net

YOUNG girls are turning to prostitution in an effort to make ends meet, according to a leading psychiatrist.

Dr David Allen said that as difficult economic times persist, illicit relationships between girls and older men are becoming "increasingly common" as a means to pay for expenses such as school and utility bills.

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Dr David Allen

In his recently released crime study, published in its entirety as today's Insight (see page 12B) Dr Allen used a clinical epidemiological approach to analysing the root causes of crime over the last five years by analysing data from "diverse focus groups" in the community.

He named the global economic downturn, which left some Bahamians to seek other financial means, as one of the reasons behind crime.

Another symptom of the hard times, Dr Allen said, is that young girls "make themselves available to older men in a form of prostitution which is becoming increasingly common. This is seen as an acceptable way to pay for education or family bills, eg cable, electricity and water."

Yesterday, Dr Allen told The Tribune that in many cases, the parents of these girls are aware of what is going on, but turn a blind eye because the money helps the family.

The men take part in these illicit affairs because of the "excitement" they feel in being with a young girl, and their superstitions about STDs, he claims.

Dr Allen said: "The younger boys cannot provide the girls with the kind of lifestyle they want, but older guys have cars and can also give them money and they in turn of course provide the service. They don't call it prostitution but it is a form of prostitution.

"Now the older guy would buy a fridge, air conditioner, a microwave for the family, so when the mother gets angry at the daughter, the daughter retorts to her and says 'you better be quiet because if you don't leave me alone we'll take our stuff out'.

He said that some single mothers, "even though they're angry at the daughter, remain quiet because they are benefiting by the appliances that the illicit relationship is producing."

Dr Allen said he's heard of men older than 30 entering into relationships with teenage girls and he's been exploring the men's motives.

"One of the reasons is, there's the excitement of it and then there was also - I uncovered some stupid belief that said if you go with a younger girl, a virgin, you have less chance of getting AIDS."

Dr Allen also pointed to a lack of a father figure in many homes as another reason young girls become associated with older men.

"Here's another thing I found out. A lot of these young girls are longing for a father; these young girls are pining for a father. It's almost like the men, because of the social situation, are in demand.

"So the mother is saying 'I don't want you to', but on the other hand she's benefiting, and the young girl is saying 'I don't have a father who cares for me, but this person is like a father'.

"So, you may look at it like the older men are like surrogate fathers."

Last November police spoke out over the "disturbing trend" of missing juvenile girls being found with their adult boyfriends.

"We want to put the warning out, particularly to these young girls. They are putting themselves in harm's way," Supt Stephen Dean said. "A number of things can happen: they can be murdered, used as prostitutes, abducted, sexually abused... We are very concerned about this."

Supt Dean also sent out a warning to the adult men.

"We are finding out most of these girls are getting involved in sexual activities with adult men.

"We're saying to the young men out there who are luring these girls from their parent''s home - it is a criminal offence to have unlawful sexual intercourse with young teenage girls."

Comments

Just_some_Perspective 2 years ago

This problem has been an on going issue throughout the Bahamas. However highlighting the issues are not enough anymore. We need viable solutions and a push for social and educational programs that seek to empower women and young men in this country.

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RightIsRight 2 years ago

I hope Dr. Allen was not paid for this study. This has been going on from back in the day when girls did it for chicken in the bag or a pair of LA Gear.

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DHL 2 years ago

So did Dr. Allen miss the 80s and the drug trade of that period in the Bahamas.

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precioussands 2 years ago

Selling one's body or selling oneself is old...this behaviour has been going on not only in the Bahamas, but everywhere...however, these are young girls who are still little girls. These young teen and young adults, are looking for their dad's to be there for them, to act like dad's and to act like father's. They are looking for a sense of belonging. Until the father's take full responsibility towards caring, loving, and always being there for their daughters, these young girls, (both teens and youths) will be selling their bodies to grown, ugly, fat, men with no morals, men who are bullies, men with low self-esteem, who lie, cheat, take advantage of these young girls, and cheat and continue to cheat on their wive's, live in partners, girlfriends etc. Men, hopefully you guys will have the presence of mind, before you strip these girls, look in the mirror and imagine your daughters in front of your faces, would you like to have some grumpy, dirty, slimey, flithy, no-good bastard, taking advantage of your daughters? Dr. Allen, put on a talk show, or better still, have a seminar and ask them what motivates them to do these ugly acts of criminal activity to these young girls, or even to women..Men just because you feel an urge to have sex with a young teen, so that you do not get AIDS, is it then okay for you to pass your dirty, flithy ugly, health issues to these young girls...you men who behave in this kind of manner, should truly have your little heads pinned to your belly button. Shame on you ! As a mother, as a woman, as an aunt, who has several nieces I hope I never have to confront anyone of you. Dr. Allen, in your buisness, ask how you can help these young girls....you talk about the girls, what about these old, middle-aged frumpy men, or these young men with their hormones all over the map that this behaviour is acceptable? Ask yourself why are our young girls behaving this way. Talk to their fathers. Talk to their parents..Come on!! You know the score? Thanks for taking the time to read my response...I am just disappointed !

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SharingOnline 2 years ago

The Girl Effect: The Clock Is Ticking This You Tube video was shared with me today. How appropriate! Please take a look. It doesn't matter how long this has been going on. One day is too long. Dr. Allen's findings may not be new but it is scientifically documented and we can use it to make decision to move ahead in a positive direction. I hope that Dr. Allen was paid because he is making a difference by bringing this to the forefront. Maybe more money can be put forth to help us make more differences with this situation. Rightsright needs to take this more seriously. And DHL Dr. Allen worked did significant work during the 80s when drugs and all you discussed was going on. What did you do?

We need to stop saying that it has been going on for a while so therefore its not important or significant.

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