Support Teen Health and Safety
House Committee Denies Added Funds for Abstinence-Only Programs; Vote Shows Support for the Health and Safety of America's Teens
WASHINGTON, DC — Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) today applauded House Appropriations Committee members who showed they valued the health and safety of America's teens by refusing to dramatically increase funding for abstinence-only-until-marriage programs. Abstinence-only programs deny teenagers medically accurate information about birth control and about preventing sexually transmitted infections. Studies have shown that teens who participate in abstinence-only programs are less likely to use contraception when they become sexually active than peers who receive medically accurate sex education.
"More than anything, parents want their teens to be safe and healthy. Abstinence-only programs keep teens in the dark and do nothing to help parents protect their children's health," said PPFA President Cecile Richards.
In the last decade, close to $1 billion has been spent on ineffective and inaccurate abstinence-only programs. Planned Parenthood, along with other national, state, and local organizations that care about our nation's teens, sent a letter to Congress opposing further funding for abstinence-only-until-marriage programs.
"Planned Parenthood urges Congress to stay on track by refusing to waste money on programs that don't work," added Richards. "We must support education programs that will help American families — programs that include information about abstinence as well as contraception, healthy communication, responsible decision-making, and prevention of sexually transmitted infections."
Planned Parenthood Federation of America is the nation's leading sexual and reproductive health care advocate and provider. We believe that everyone has the right to choose when or whether to have a child, and that every child should be wanted and loved. Planned Parenthood affiliates operate more than 860 health centers nationwide, providing medical services and sexuality education for millions of women, men, and teenagers each year. We also work with allies worldwide to ensure that all women and men have the right and the means to meet their sexual and reproductive health care needs.