May 30, 2017
To arrange an interview with Ascend, contact Christine Eckley
at 202-248-5420 or ceckley@WeAscend.org.
For Immediate Release:
President Trump’s Budget Supports Sexual Risk Avoidance (SRA) Education
The President’s FY 2018 budget was released and sent to Congress on May 23, 2017. Sex education funding, while a small part of the overall budget, was still significant because it calls for a dramatic change in federal sex education policy.
President Trump asked Congress to maintain funding for Sexual Risk Avoidance (SRA) education, an approach that normalizes sexual delay and is supported by a public health strategy typically used to address other risk behaviors.
He also asked Congress to eliminate the Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program (TPP), an approach that typically normalizes teen sex and which government research revealed was an abject failure. The research showed that more than 80% of students in the program either fared worse or no better than their peers. The TPP program was initiated near the beginning of the Obama Administration and became the cornerstone for his sex education priorities throughout both terms.
“We applaud President Trump for his immediate efforts to give more youth the skills they need to avoid sexual risk,” noted Valerie Huber, President/CEO of Ascend. “ Currently, only 10 cents of every federal sex education dollar is devoted to SRA education. With the elimination of the TPP program and maintenance of the Sexual Risk Avoidance Education Program, about 20 cents of every dollar will be devoted to SRA education. This is a good step in the right direction. Ascend supports parity between the two approaches. We urge Congress to take the President’s recommendations and do all they can to give even more youth the opportunity to focus on their futures, rather than on any of the possible consequences of teen sex.”
The proposed budget also calls for the reauthorization of the Title V abstinence education state block grant at its current funding level for two years.
Huber added: “The majority of teens have not had sex, far fewer than 25 years ago. We are eager to work with both Congress and the Administration to ensure that these increasingly healthy choices are reinforced in sex education classes across America. The President’s proposed budget is a great start.”
Ascend champions youth to make healthy decisions in relationships and life by promoting well being through a primary prevention strategy, and as a national membership and advocacy organization that serves, leads, represents and equips the Sexual Risk Avoidance field.