Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest
PRESS RELEASE FOR: Friday, February 13, 2015
CONTACT: Jessica Cler, Alaska Public Affairs Manager, (907) 841-0092
Planned Parenthood Teens in Alaska Take Part in First Annual Teen Lobby Day at the State Capitol
Juneau, AK — Today, young, passionate supporters of women, men and teen’s health and reproductive justice will come together in Juneau to make their voices heard by meeting with their legislators. At the Peer Education Program’s first annual Teen Lobby Day, teens from Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest’s Juneau Teen Council will ask for funding for sexually transmitted infections (STI) prevention, testing, and treatment, and programs so all Alaska residents have the freedom to access the health care they need.
Teen Council members will urge their legislators to take action to combat high rates of STIs in the state, and support reproductive justice efforts such as Erin’s Law to expand sexual assault awareness and prevention efforts in Alaska schools.
“These teens are at the Alaska State Capitol today to engage in the most essential part of the democratic process: making their voices heard,” said Jessica Cler, Alaska Public Affairs Manager. “With 20 percent of Planned Parenthood health centers providing care in rural or medically underserved areas statewide, Planned Parenthood serves as an essential source of primary and preventive health care in Alaska and our teens are making this point clear.”
Throughout the school year Teen Council members have prepared for Teen Lobby Day by receiving training on topics related to social justice and sexual health. As peer educators, they then provide accurate, appropriate and engaging educational presentations to fellow students and others within their community.
A main focus of the teens’ lobbying efforts will be to urge legislators to adopt medically and scientifically accurate sex education to address staggering rates of STIs in the state. Alaska leads the country in chlamydia infection rates, and teenagers and young adults are at significantly higher risk for infection. Sex education would also address the problems of unintended and teen pregnancies, which costs the states millions. Half of pregnancies in Alaska are unintended, and 64 percent of births resulting from those pregnancies are paid for by Denali Kid Care—costing the state more than $100 million annually.
For inquiries, please contact Jessica Cler, Alaska Public Affairs Manager, (907) 841-0092
February 13, 2015
September 09, 2016