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Girl Guides back 'airbrushing snub'

Girl Guides from across the world have added their names to a petition to tackle airbrushed images of glamorous celebrities.

Hundreds of youngsters attending Girlguiding UK's centenary celebrations at Harewood House in Leeds gave their support to a campaign calling on the Government to introduce compulsory labelling on "touched-up" pictures in magazines.

Lauren Fletcher, an 11-year-old Guide, said seeing unrealistic images of women often made her feel "really upset".

She said: "I think it's because people in magazines are made to look different when that's not really how they look and it might make people uncomfortable about themselves. I just think that's unfair because it's not how they really look."

Girlguiding UK said half of 16 to 21-year-old girls consider having surgery to change the way they look, with 42% of 11 to 16-year-olds admitting to watching what they eat.

Hannah Clements, 12, said she often thought about her appearance because of airbrushed images and said she would like to see celebrities as they really are.

"It's making people feel depressed," she added, "because they think everyone's more pretty than them and they want to change themselves and they shouldn't because everyone's fine the way they look."

Liz Burnley, chief guide of Girlguiding UK, said many of the group's girls, which has members in 146 countries, asked for the petition after research carried out with eating disorders charity Beat on young girls revealed they were concerned about the way they look.

The group now hopes the petition will be seen by David Cameron and may act as a catalyst to getting rid of airbrushed images entirely.

Susan Ringwood, of eating disorder charity Beat, said: "Young people with eating disorders tell us that being surrounded every day by pictures of unnaturally 'perfect' bodies makes their own recovery so much more difficult to achieve. We are committed to working with Girlguiding UK and others to make this important call to action a reality."


From Belfast Telegraph