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Planned Parenthood of New York City in the News

***FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE***    PRESS CONTACT:  Mel Gagarin
(212) 274-7294/mel.gagarin@ppnyc.org

GREATER NEW YORK PLANNED PARENTHOOD AFFILIATES LAUNCH “NOWUKNOW,” A CUTTING-EDGE CAMPAIGN AIMED AT CURBING TEEN PREGNANCY AND STIs (9/24/12)

Multi-faceted campaign meets young people “where they are” to deliver accurate information regarding sexual and reproductive health and services

(New York, NY) – Today Planned Parenthood of New York City (PPNYC), along with Planned Parenthood Nassau County (PPNC), Planned Parenthood Hudson Peconic (PPHP), and Planned Parenthood Mid-Hudson Valley (PPMHV), launched “NowUKnow,” a video and text-message campaign aimed at educating at-risk young people in New York City and surrounding areas about the prevention of unintended pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections (STIs).

The campaign, beginning this month and running through December, uses two short video ads to introduce young viewers to Troy and Lisa, the campaign’s protagonists.  Troy feels a burning sensation and thinks he may have an STI, while Lisa had a condom break during a sexual encounter and is concerned about having had unprotected sex. Young people can text “Troy” or “Lisa” to 802495 to follow their stories. Over the course of the campaign, text messages will tell a story and link young people to information about STI prevention, pregnancy prevention, safer sex, and locations of local Planned Parenthood health centers where they can receive safe and confidential care.

We are committed to reaching young people via their communication method of choice and the online venues they frequent. As the campaign progresses,  it will also be supported by a “NowUKnow” Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/NowUKnowNY) and Twitter account (https://twitter.com/NowUKnowNY), where young people can continue the conversation started by “NowUKnow.”  Young people will be introduced to the campaign through geotargeted online video advertising on YouTube TrueView Network, Globalgrind.com, and Complex Media Network. The campaign’s website can be viewed here: www.nowuknowny.com.

The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene’s study of teen pregnancy between 2000 and 2009 found that the vast majority of the teen pregnancies in New York City were unintended.  Teens also represent more than 1 in 4 diagnosed STI cases in the city. “At Planned Parenthood we want our young people to lead safe and healthy lives,” said Joan Malin, President and CEO of Planned Parenthood of New York City. “This campaign is an effort to ensure that our young people have accurate information regarding sex and sexuality so they can do just that. Our hope is that this campaign will serve as a first step in a longer conversation with New York’s young people.”

“From using smartphone apps for birth control reminders to texting questions about sexual health to educators, more than ever teens turn to technology to track information pertinent to their sexual and reproductive health. It’s important that we reach young people where they are and that they know that Planned Parenthood health centers are a safe place to get sexual and reproductive health services,” added Reina Schiffrin, President/CEO of Planned Parenthood Hudson Peconic.

“Here in the mid-Hudson Valley, young people are disproportionately affected by high rates of unintended pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections. This campaign is an effort to ensure that young people have accurate information regarding sex and sexuality so they can lead happier and healthier lives. We hope that this campaign will serve as a first step in a longer conversation between young people, and their parents or guardian, about their sexual and reproductive health,” said Ruth-Ellen Blodgett, President and CEO of Planned Parenthood Mid-Hudson Valley.
 
“In Nassau County, our efforts are targeting communities where the teen pregnancy rate is up to five times the county average. It’s clear that young people in Nassau and across New York need information about making healthy decisions, saying no to peer pressure, and locating essential family planning services. This campaign is offering that information, and we’re excited to be a part of it,” said JoAnn D. Smith, President and CEO of Planned Parenthood Nassau County.

Studies show that young people communicate through text messaging more than any other form of communication, making a text-based education campaign an effective way of reaching at-risk youth "where they are."

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Since 1916, Planned Parenthood of New York City (PPNYC) has been an advocate for and provider of reproductive health services and education for New Yorkers.  Serving nearly 50,000 clients annually, PPNYC’s health care centers in Manhattan, Brooklyn, the Bronx, and Staten Island offer reproductive health services, including gynecological care, contraception, pregnancy testing, abortion, testing and treatment for sexually transmitted infections, and HIV testing and counseling.  Through a threefold mission of clinical services, education, and advocacy, PPNYC brings better health and more fulfilling lives to each new generation of New Yorkers.   As a voice for reproductive freedom, PPNYC supports legislation and policies to ensure that all New Yorkers—and, in fact, people around the world—will have access to the full range of reproductive health care services and information.


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