One of the UK’s largest groups of Christian evangelicals has joined a campaign to ban The Sun’s topless page 3 images.
The Evangelical Alliance, which represents two million people across the UK, has voiced its support for the No More Page 3 Campaign.
It made its announcement a day after the national paper published a topless image of a model on the front page in support of breast cancer awareness.
The Sun claims its ‘Check ’em Tuesday’ campaign will make people more “aware of the dangers of breast cancer”.
But a breast cancer survivor, who is the Alliance’s head of supporter relations, said she is “concerned about the tactics the newspaper has used”.
The general director of the Alliance, Steve Clifford, added: “There is no way having naked women featured in a ‘family’ newspaper can be seen as good for society”.
Other organisations including Breast Cancer Care said that The Sun’s campaign could be viewed as “ill-judged and insensitive” by relatives or victims.
The No More Page 3 campaign said “we can’t help but feel that it’s a real shame the Sun has decided to use these sexualised images of young women to highlight breast cancer.
“They will say that they want to use the power of Page Three as a force for good – we say that a society in which sexualised images of young women are seen as that powerful has to change.”
A petition to ban the paper’s topless images began in August 2012 and has almost 150,000 signatures.
Founder of the campaign, Lucy Holmes, has written to The Sun editor asking him to “stop showing topless pictures of young women in Britain’s most widely read newspaper, stop conditioning your readers to view women as sex objects”.
Clifford, of the Evangelical Alliance, commented “we are rallying our troops to lend their weight to the campaign”.
“As evangelical Christians we believe that we are all made in the image of God and that our bodies are a product of God’s amazing design, not to be ogled at or objectified”, he explained.
The Alliance’s member organisation The Girls’ Brigade has also written to The Sun’s editor calling for topless images to be banned.
A survey of its members found that 70 per cent thought Page 3 had a negative impact on their self-esteem.