The review, published in the Journal of Adolescent Health, examines the U. Young people need access to accurate and comprehensive sexual health information to protect their health and lives.
See the Journal of School Health online at: A number of researchers and organizations have reviewed these materials and found that they rely on fear and shame, include medical inaccuracies, and are inconsistent in their definitions of abstinence.
Thus, AOUM programs threaten fundamental human rights to health, information, and life. Research on abstinence-only-until-marriage programs remains inconclusive. August 22, Adolescence is marked by the emergence of human sexuality, sexual identity and the initiation of intimate relations; within this context, abstinence from sexual intercourse can be a healthy choice.
Although abstinence is theoretically effective, in actual practice, intentions to abstain from Abstinence only until marriage activity often fail. Young people who took a pledge were one-third less likely to use contraception when they did become sexually active than their peers who had not pledged.
Government Accountability Office, The Waxman Report Source: None was evaluated for behavioral impact. As of11 states had made the results of Abstinence only until marriage of their state-wide abstinence-only-until-marriage programs available for review.
More than 80 percent of the abstinence-only curricula reviewed contain false, misleading, or distorted information about reproductive health.
However, programs that promote abstinence-only-until-marriage AOUM or sexual risk avoidance are scientifically and ethically problematic and—as such—have been widely rejected by medical and public health professionals.
The Department of Health and Human Services HHS is not providing adequate oversight of federally funded abstinence-only-until-marriage programs. Based on the available evidence, experts assert that government support of these programs has undermined sexuality education in the U.
Inthe Federal Government Accountability Office GAO concluded that government-approved evaluations of abstinence-only programs fail to follow scientific guidelines.
Advocates for Youth, The STD consequences of adolescent virginity pledges Source: AOUM programs, as defined by U. In countries receiving funds from PEPFAR, teens under the age of 15 are not allowed to receive information about condoms.
Doug Kirby, Emerging Answers: Bush administration increased federal funding for abstinence-only programs the only type funded even under the previous Clinton Administrationwhile the Obama administration reversed the emphasis and provided more federal dollars for comprehensive sex education.
Kirby gathered information on over studies to identify the elements that made the programs effective. However, many adolescents who intend to practice abstinence fail to actually do so, and they often fail to use condoms or other forms of contraception when they do have intercourse.
Today, virginity pledges are also part of most abstinence-only-until-marriage curricula and programs.
Funding recipients may give information about condoms to youth over 15 years old, but cannot use the funding to provide condoms or promote usage. Parents also want their children to be taught about contraception.
These programs often promote gender stereotypes that are associated with negative sexual health behaviors. Thirteen leading experts in adolescent sexuality research and policy, including Guttmacher Institute researcher Laura Lindbergreview the scientific evidence accumulated over several decades and once again conclude that AOUM programs are ineffective, stigmatizing and unethical.
Governments, health care providers and educators have an ethical obligation to provide such information to their citizens, patients and students.
Not only is information inadequate, but opponents believe that young people have the right to receive comprehensive information about how to protect themselves and their sexual health.
Mathematica Policy Research, Inc. The weight of scientific evidence finds that AOUM programs are not effective in delaying initiation of sexual intercourse or changing other sexual risk behaviors. Based on this body of research, the Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine has published updated recommendations on sexuality education policies and programsreaffirming the importance of approaches that are comprehensive and grounded in scientific evidence.
Funding, which began in the s, has continued to increase since its inception, though support for the programs and legislation surrounding them has become dependent upon the current administration. Description[ edit ] Abstinence education teaches children and adolescents to abstain from sexual activity, and that this is the only certain method of avoiding pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections STIs.
National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy, Comprehensive sexuality education holds far more promise for promoting positive sexual behaviors among young people than abstinence-only-until-marriage programs.
Yet, the debate goes on about which approach to fund and how medical accuracy clauses should be included in state legislation mandating comprehensive sexuality education. Adolescence is marked by the emergence of human sexuality, sexual identity and the initiation of intimate relations; within this context, abstinence from sexual intercourse can be a healthy choice.
However, programs that promote abstinence-only-until-marriage (AOUM) or sexual risk avoidance (SRA. For over two decades, the federal government has sunk millions of taxpayer dollars into abstinence-only-until-marriage programs.
While these programs often replace more comprehensive sexuality education courses, they rarely provide information on even the most basic topics in human sexuality such as puberty, reproductive anatomy, and.
Proponents of abstinence-only sex education argue that this approach is superior to comprehensive sex education because it emphasizes the teaching of morality that limits sex to that within the bounds of marriage, and that sex before marriage and at a young age has heavy physical and emotional costs.
Advocates for Youth champions efforts that help young people make informed and responsible decisions about their reproductive and sexual health. Advocates believes it can best serve the field by boldly advocating for a more positive and realistic approach to adolescent sexual health.
Advocates focuses its work on young people ages in. Sincethe federal government has spent over $2 billion on abstinence-only-until-marriage programs.
They don’t work.Download