abstinence education

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Utah Legislature Expels Sex Ed

Republicans refuse to debate bill dropping the subject

(Newser) - Utah's legislature has passed a bill allowing schools to drop their sex education programs and forbidding any instruction on the use of contraception. The Senate passed the bill Tuesday in a 19-10 vote, the Salt Lake City Tribune reports. Some Democrats spoke up against the bill and asked questions... More »

Candie's: Bristol Worth Every Penny

Palin is the 'gift that keeps on giving,' says founder

(Newser) - Those of you who thought paying Bristol Palin $262,500 to promote sexual abstinence might've been a wee bit excessive can just stuff it, says Candie's Foundation founder Neil Cole, calling the payout "an amazing investment." "Bristol's the gift that keeps on giving," Cole says; indeed,... More »

Women Don't Trust Palin on Abortion: Poll

54% of all voters think Planned Parenthood trustworthy; 24% think same of Palin

(Newser) - Most American voters—particularly women—don’t trust Sarah Palin on women’s health issues like abortion, sex ed, and birth control, a Planned Parenthood poll finds. While 54% of voters consider Planned Parenthood trustworthy on women’s health, only 24% find Palin trustworthy on the matter. The numbers inch... More »

Abstinence-Only States Have More Teen Pregnancy

Study shows big regional disparities

(Newser) - While US teen pregnancy rates are falling overall, some states currently have dramatically higher rates than others, according to a new CDC study—and they just happen to be states emphasizing abstinence-only sex education. In New England, for example, 2008 birth rates stood at less than 25 per 1,000... More »

Health Law Slips in $250M for Abstinence-Only Education

Critics charge approach is ineffective, dangerous

(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... More »

Turns Out Abstinence Ed Does Cut Teen Sex

It beat safe sex program in recent study

(Newser) - Abstinence-only sex education is back on solid scientific ground, with a study showing the method may be more effective than safe sex education in discouraging young teens from taking the plunge. Different groups of 6th- and 7th-graders were given short courses in abstinence, safe sex, or a combination of the... More »

Teen Pregnancy Rising Again

Sudden spike sparks debate over abstinence-only education

(Newser) - The teen pregnancy rate spiked 3% between 2005 and 2006, its first increase since 1990, according to new federal data released today. “The decline in teen pregnancy has stopped—and in fact turned around,” said the director of the nonpartisan research group that conducted the survey. “These... More »

Senate Finance Panel Agrees at Last—to Fund Abstinence Ed

Conrad, Lincoln, join GOP to pass measure

(Newser) - On the same day it voted to kill Democrats' hopes for a health bill with a public option, the Senate Finance Committee showed the love to abstinence. Committee Republicans displayed a little nostalgia for the Bush administration, voting to restore $50 million a year in federal funding for abstinence-only education... More »

Wanna Have Sex? Picture 'Screaming Baby': Bristol

Teen mom ensures years of therapy for her child with one comment

(Newser) - Bristol Palin thinks the best advertisement for abstinence is “a screaming newborn baby,” she tells People in a look at the life of a teenage mom. “If girls realized the consequences of sex, nobody would be having sex,” says Bristol, who graduated high school last week,... More »

Obama Budget Cuts Funds for Abstinence-Only Sex Ed

(Newser) - Take that, Bristol. The Obama administration seeks to cut most federal funding for abstinence-only sex education programs, the Wall Street Journal reports. Obama's proposed budget for 2010 would scrap two programs that fund abstinence education—with $145 million—and replace them with a $160 million initiative that funnels 75% of... More »

Bristol as a Role Model? You Must Be Kidding

(Newser) - When the Candie’s teen fashion line came under fire for dressing high school girls like hookers, it formed a nonprofit to fight teen pregnancy. And when the foundation needed a “teen ambassador,” it called Bristol Palin. “Can I say upfront that this is a terrible, terrible... More »

Sex Query? Experts Help Teens Via Texting

Health professionals text teens answers to anonymous sex questions

(Newser) - Teenagers no longer need to reveal their angst over pregnancy or noisy sex in crowded classrooms, the New York Times reports. Public health officials, fretting over the state of sex ed in US schools, are now answering questions via text message. Some use multiple choice menus and automated responses, but... More »

Mississippi Has Most Teen Pregnancies

State passes Texas and New Mexico in nationwide uptick

(Newser) - Mississippi has the highest rate of teen pregnancy in the US, the AP reports. Some 68 Mississippi women out of 1,000 aged 15-19 got pregnant in 2006—the most recent year for which data are available, and in which the US rate rose for the first time in 15... More »

Abstinence Vows Don't Work: Study

Teens who pledge purity still do it, and they use protection less

(Newser) - Taking an abstinence pledge made teenagers no less likely to have sex before marriage but significantly less likely to use contraceptives when they did have sex, the Washington Post reports. “Previous studies would compare a mixture of apples and oranges,” said Janet Rosenbaum, the author of a new... More »

Obama Reviews Abortion Rules

Bush's abstinence initiatives, Reagan's 'gag rule' could go way of dodo.

(Newser) - Barack Obama’s transition team is hard at work deciding how and when to undo the Bush administration’s abortion policies, the Wall Street Journal reports. Bush’s ban on federal stem cell research funding will be among the first to go—a move that has broad bipartisan support—along... More »

Palin, McCain Differ on Sex Education

Senator supports abstinence-only; she is 'pro-contraception'

(Newser) - Sarah Palin and John McCain differ on sex education, with Palin favoring both contraceptive and abstinence education in schools—while McCain and the GOP platform support teaching abstinence only, the Los Angeles Times observes. “I'm pro-contraception, and I think kids who may not hear about it at home should... More »

Teen Sex Rate Stops Dropping

Condom use also levels off, reviving debate about abstinence sex ed

(Newser) - A decade-long drop in the teen sex rate leveled off between 2001-2007 and it may now be slowly rising again, the Washington Post reports. The government survey of thousands of high school students also found that an increase in condom use flattened out in 2003. The numbers have alarmed public... More »

Abstinence Campaign Targets Parents

Advocates of embattled sex-ed program launch $1M drive

(Newser) - Abstinence-based sex-ed advocates have launched a campaign to rally a million parents to support the method, the Washington Post reports. The $1-million Parents for Truth campaign has sent e-mails pushing the approach to some 30,000 supporters and parents, with plans to to contact 100,000 more this week. The... More »

Women Reclaim Virginity Through Faith, Surgery

Growing number seek to stake a new claim to innocence

(Newser) - Efforts to reclaim lost virginity appear to be gaining steam across the country, MSNBC reports. More young women are declaring a sexual do-over, with some even opting for surgical replacement of the hymen, say doctors who’ve seen an increase in the procedures. “I felt really bad from a... More »

Bush Pushes Abstinence in AIDS Program

In Tanzania, president prods Congress to renew global aid pact

(Newser) - President Bush urged Congress today to “stop squabbling” and renew his global AIDS program, which provides medication and treatment for millions and earmarks funds for abstinence efforts. In Tanzania, his African tour’s second stop, Bush signed a $700 million aid package, saying, “We don’t want people... More »

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