Health Law Slips in $250M for Abstinence-Only Education
Critics charge approach is ineffective, dangerous
By Emily Rauhala, Newser User
Posted Apr 1, 2010 3:31 AM CDT
Teen mom Bristol Palin was a product of abstinence-only education.   (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer, File)

(Newser) – Obama's health care reform includes $250 million for abstinence-only sexual education. To receive the funding, programs must teach that abstinence from sexual activity is "the only certain way to avoid out-of-wedlock pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases, and other associated health problems." They must also tell young people that pre-marital sex is "likely to have harmful psychological and physical effects," CNN notes.

Furious critics charge that supporting abstinence-based programs is wasteful and dangerous. A 2009 study published in Pediatrics showed teens who made virginity pledges are just as likely to have sex before marriage and less likely to use condoms or birth control when they do have sex. The law also sets up a separate funding stream of $75 million for "personal responsibility education," which includes teaching about both abstinence and contraception.

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Showing 3 of 26 comments
Apr 2, 2010 5:45 PM CDT
I still fail to see why parents push it off on the government to educate their kids about sex. You can form words.. You can look at your kid.. And if you're not willing to you shouldn't have procreated.
Apr 2, 2010 4:00 AM CDT
If I had it my way, all students would be taught comprehensive sex ed. However, that will probably never happen, so I can understand giving SOME money to abstinence-only "sex ed" for those parents who choose this "education" for their children. However, the MAJORITY of funds should be given to teach comprehensive sex ed, since teaching abstinence-only doesn't actually require any teaching.
Apr 1, 2010 5:55 PM CDT
Knocked up teenagers as far as the eye can see... Blame yourself when your kid comes home pregnant if you don't have the sense to talk to them about it yourself. Teens are gonna do what they do, hand them the condom and tell em' how to use it if you have to!