ERIC Number: ED471667
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2002-Sep
Reference Count: N/A
Ignorance Only: HIV/AIDS, Human Rights, and Federally Funded Abstinence-Only Programs in the United States. Texas: A Case Study.
Human Rights Watch, v14 n5 Sep 2002
This report contends that programs teaching teenagers to "just say no" to sex before marriage are threatening adolescent health by censoring basic information about how to prevent HIV/AIDS. The report focuses on federally funded "abstinence-only-until-marriage" programs in Texas, where advertising campaigns convey the message that teenagers should not use condoms because they don't work. Some school-based programs in Texas do not mention condoms at all. Federal health agencies share the broad scientific consensus that condoms, when used correctly, are highly effective in preventing the transmission of HIV. Yet the U.S. government currently spends more than $100 million each year on "abstinence-only-until-marriage" programs, which cannot by law "promote or endorse" condoms or provide instruction regarding their use. This report concludes that federally funded abstinence-only programs, in keeping with their federal mandate, deny children basic information that could protect them from HIV/AIDS infection and discriminate against gay and lesbian children. In so doing, it is argued that these programs not only interfere with fundamental rights to information, to health and to equal protection under the law. (GCP)
Descriptors: Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome, Adolescents, Condoms, Federal Programs, Prevention, Safe Sex, Sex Education, Sexual Abstinence, Sexually Transmitted Diseases
Human Rights Watch, 350 Fifth Ave., 34th Floor, New York, NY 10118-3299 ($5). Tel.: 212-290-4700; Web site: http://www.hrw.org. For full text: http://hrw.org/reports/2002/usa0902/.
Publication Type: Collected Works - Serials; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Human Rights Watch, New York, NY.
Identifiers - Location: Texas