A CAMPAIGNER who has been fighting against the objectification of women since the murder of her sister has praised the announcement that consent will be taught in schools.

Gemma Aitchison, from Westhoughton, founded YES Matters after the rape and murder of 16-year-old Sasha Marsden in Blackpool in January 2013.

Sasha's killer David Minto, a caretaker at a hotel, was sentenced to life imprisonment after he was found guilty by jury in July 2013.

At the weekend, the Department of Education revealed that there would be compulsory sex education in schools that would focus on exploitation, grooming, harassment and abuse — both online and offline.

Ms Aitchison described the move as a step forward and said early prevention was the best way to tackle the issue.

The 32-year-old said: "I think it just proves that if you carry on trying, you can get somewhere and you can be listened to.

"And I am not just coming from my point of view. There have been a lot of things happening including what happened to my sister.

"I still think that education is prevention with young people becoming more informed about these issues."

Rotherham MP Sarah Champion, who has been campaigning in Parliament, described the milestone as the "biggest single step to protect children from abuse & challenge gender assumptions".

Ms Aitchison, mother of 11-year-old Len, is now leading the charity's push to raise funds to create a new centre to support victims and to raise awareness about the issue. The next event is a Mad Hatter's tea party, which will be held at Bolton Town Hall on Saturday, August 4.

She said: "We are going to be having a talk about the different work that we want to do in the centre.

"I have been as far as London and Brussels to campaign but I really want to make a difference in my home town."

She said the aim is to have the new service based in the town centre to make it more accessible for the community.

YES Matters uses youth work and informal education to talk to young people about consent, body image, pornography and media influence.

For more information or to donate to the charity, go to the group's Facebook page.