March 4, 2011
CDC Data Shows Majority of Teens are NOT Doing it!
New data released by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) confirm that the majority of teens are not having sex. According to 2006-2008 survey results released yesterday by the National Center for Health Statistics, 68% of boys and 67% of girls (age 15-17) have never had sexual intercourse.
And overall sexual contact trends are also moving in the right direction with 53% of boys and 58% of girls (age 15-17) reporting that they have never had oral, anal, or vaginal sex with anyone. This is a positive change from 2002 when only 46% of boys and 49% of girls reported no sexual contact - this according to a USA Today article analyzing the findings yesterday.
This report challenges the wisdom of the recent federal funding cuts to abstinence education. According to Huber, “One hundred sixty-nine abstinence education programs lost funding and over 1 million students lost access to the very programs that can support and encourage the positive trends represented by this data. If we are serious about decreasing teen sexual activity, we need to use the data to instruct public policy. Funding priority should be given to programs that support this healthy trend rather than capitulating to those who want to normalize sex among teens and simply offer contraception as a solution. The data renders ‘null and void’ the ‘abstinence is unrealistic’ claims made by anti-abstinence advocacy groups.“
She adds: “ Our national sex education priorities should seek to further improve these numbers by providing teens with programs that help them to successfully wait for sex . We must insure programs that support sexual risk avoidance are available to as many youth as possible”
Today’s report comes on the heels of another recently released report by HHS that showed the majority of teens support premarital abstinence in general and for themselves. NAEA calls on Congress to reinstate abstinence education as a community-based approach in the FY 2012 budget. “The data is clearly siding in favor of a renewed priority on the risk avoidance abstinence education approach… and it just happens also to be the healthiest option for teens.” concludes Huber.
Read the entire report here.
Read the USA Today article here.
Read the HHS report on parent and teen attitudes of sex education here.
March 4, 2011