Sexual Offences (Amendment) Act 2000

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The Sexual Offences (Amendment) Act 2000 equalised the age of consent for both homosexual and heterosexual acts, for both men and women, as 16 in Great Britain, 17 in Northern Ireland. It also made it illegal for teachers and other people in a position of trust to have sex with their pupils etc under 18.

The Bill which eventually became the Act was introduced in response to a ruling of the European Court of Human Rights. It was rejected by the House of Lords, and was eventually passed when the Government invoked the Parliament Act 1949.