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Check out the 2014 Youth ShowOUT! The campaign will engage and mobilize young voters across the country through on the ground organizing, social media activism, and online actions at youthshowout.org.  Advocates for Youth (Advocates), Feminist Majority Foundation (FMF), and Planned Parenthood Generation (PPGen), a project of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, are joining forces for this exciting new national civic engagement campaign.

In 2014, young voters will do more than just turn out–they will ShowOUT! Youth leaders are educating their peers, registering voters, participating in voter pledge drives, volunteering, and more. Young people are at the helm of lasting change in our country. They are taking charge and becoming a part of the political process.

Young people are an essential component of the rising electorate. Every day, nearly 12,000 young people turn 18 years old and become eligible to vote. At Advocates for Youth we know firsthand the power of young people is undeniable. There are tens of thousands of youth activists and leaders who are actively reshaping their communities and changing what politics looks like in this country. We have a responsibility to work alongside these young people as they lead us to new solutions and lasting change.

Visit Youth ShowOUT, sign the pledge, and share with friends!

Categories: Young People
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Climate change

Rising temperature, melting ice and growing ocean left no one not to be aware of climate change. But Climate changes definitely not only the environmental issues but is growing its scope of effects as increasing in temporal dimension. Rise in the sea level more than 40 nm and significant retreat of Arctic sea ice and nearly all continental glaciers, having twelve warmest years in last thirteen years with the record of 1.8-4 degree Celsius rise in the temperature are some facts of the latest climate change scenario. This environmental issue is the reproductive issue since its directly and indirectly leads to arise of new personal, social, and political problem.

Climate change refers to any change in climate over time, whether due to natural variability or as a result of human activity. It can also be regarded as a change of climate which is attributed directly or indirectly to human activity that alters the composition of the global atmosphere and which is in addition to natural climate variability observed over comparable time periods. There are many impacts of climate change on human kind. One of the one is social and human consequences of climate change. Migration of peoples from more affected area to non-affected area will definitely affects the eco system. It may leads to the unmanaged urbanization and change in land use or says improper land use according to the capability of soil. As here we are talking about the change in the whole environment, we can’t even imagine its consequences on whole living and non-living things of earths.

Climate change and health issues…

Obviously, there are the issues of health while we discuss about the change in the environment. Men and women suffer from different negative health consequences following extreme events of climate change such as floods, windstorms; droughts etc… according to the abnormalities in the environment due to climate change actions, there may have specific direct and indirect consequences to the human health. Everyone will be affected by these changes, but not equally. Vulnerability to climate change will be determined by a community or individual’s ability to adapt.. From many study it has been seen that, effects of climate change has more effect on women rather than men in the countries having gender gap. Many women around the world must adapt their lives to a changing climate. Increases in extreme weather conditions droughts, storms, and floods are already altering economies, economic development, and patterns of human migration, and are likely to be among the biggest global health threats this century.
Climate Change induced heath issues and women

So, why women are more vulnerable towards the effects of climate change induced disasters? There may be various answers from various perspectives. Poverty can be one reason because they are economically dependent on men and also the lack of proper education. These two elements always take them back in case of ideas, techniques and also the resource collection for the adaptation. Children can also be the reason of more vulnerability of women. As like men they can’t migrate but likely to remain home to care for children and elderly or sick family members. Climate change has a significant impact on securing household water, food, and fuel—activities that usually are the responsibility of women and girls. In times of drought and erratic rainfall, women and girls must walk farther and spend more of their time collecting water and fuel. Girls may have to drop out of school to help their mothers with these tasks, continuing the cycle of poverty and inequity. Changing climates also affect the health of crops and livestock, and women, who are often responsible for producing the food eaten at home, must work harder for less food.

Lack of independence and decision making power are constrain of women’s ability to adapt to climate change. Women often have limited or no control over family finances and assets. In many communities, women are underrepresented in community politics, and thus have little influence over community strategies for adapting and over policies that support women’s rights and priorities. Without participation by women, programs to replace traditional crops with those better suited to the changing environment might focus only on the needs of men’s fields and not address the problems women face with household gardens.

Effects on women…

Whenever there are the issues of women’s health, Sexual health and reproductive health and right comes along with it. SRHR issues are more related to women because they are more sensitive towards these issues and regarding the SRHR issues induced as the result of climate change and it effects, due to our socio-economic condition , metal and physical condition of women; they are more vulnerable towards climate change’s effects.
In the developing countries like Nepal, women have more responsibility towards family work, agricultural work and other side they are less educated. So this scenario leads to the condition that, women have to fight hard to adapt her and her family towards the effects of climate change but lack of knowledge makes her path more difficult. In this condition, effect of adaptation obviously have effect on her physical and mental condition and ultimately towards her sexual and reproductive health as well.

SRHR issues…..

Biological structure of the female body is also more sensitive making women more vulnerable towards cc induced disasters and conditions. Many reports shows that flood waters mixed with waste and faecal matter entered the vagina and urethra of women and adolescent girls and increased the risk of Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs). UTIs are known to be lower among males than females as the urethra is longer among males so bacteria has to travel longer distance to reach bladder. According to one case study in India, there were reports of breast growth and high fever among women who lost their breast-fed infants during the 2004 tsunami. In Thiland, some adolescent girls and women of reproductive age group reported that their mensuration stopped suddenly after tsunami in 2004 due to mental shock and resumed only after a few/several month. Social norms glorifying motherhood also lead to specific kinds of SRHR issues in disaster contexts. Like when women lose their children in the disaster, there is self-inflicted and pressure to women to re-conceive in any means. Such pressure persists even if it is not safe regarding age and health condition of women.

In another scenario of post disaster situation due to climate change and global warming, many rehabilitation centers for disaster victims may have been established. As people of various types lives there together, sexual violence, harassment, rape and many gender based violence cases are reported to be high which has induced the cases of many femicide and suicide . Loss of the local resources, medicine, medical staffs and infrastructure to provide sexual and reproductive health is also the major issues that have to be faced due to disasters. There are many such direct and indirect issues of SRHR as well during disasters and condition arises by climate change. Each and every issue further relates and helps to arise or say regenerate the many others SRHR issues. Mainly in case of developing countries, issues of SRHR during disasters had created many and among them as well the condition of women are more vulnerable.

Climate change induced disasters on human have its own effect which is some time devastating and what may be the situation, when there is more casualties due to social discrepancy, health and gender issues .We cannot stop the disasters but we can stop these social discrepancy, SRHR issues, mental torture, suicide and many more by employing proper education, security, awareness, advocacy, facilities etc… Issues of climate change are more than enough, so let’s be aware not to increment any other on the list.

Categories: Sexual Health
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I’ve been watching the story unfold and the events that have taken place in Ferguson have made it evident that black and brown bodies have no worth in America. I’ve gone from apathy, to deep sadness, and now I am angry. I am fed up. I am sick and tired of hearing another name, another victim of police brutality or a racially charged murder. I am tired of fearing for my little brother’s life.

The people who are supposed to be protecting our young black and brown youth are instead, murdering them. Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Ezell Ford. Rekia Boyd, Trayvon Martin, Oscar Grant, John Crawford, Kimani Gray, and the names unfortunately go on.

My heart breaks for the people of Ferguson. I am disgusted by the war zone that was created by the police. I’m saddened by the blatant disregard for our babies. (Trigger Warning) I saw a photo of a young black girl being maced and I felt sick to my stomach. Michael Brown was only 18. Unarmed, but Black. Eric Garner said, as he gasped for air, “I can’t breathe.” Unarmed, but Black, when white suspects of greater offenses have been escorted into police vehicles. 

As I’ve heard many say, the police need to be held accountable for their actions. We need to have more open and honest dialogues about these incidents with our youth, let them know they’re loved. Black and brown bodies are precious.

Categories: Racism
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On June 30, 2014, Advocates for Youth staff stood outside the Supreme Court fighting for reproductive justice, alongside young people who are empowered, informed, and not going to give up their rights without a fight. The Burwell v. Hobby Lobby ruling allows some privately owned, “closely held” for-profit corporations to dictate the health coverage of their employees. Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Woods Products challenged the Affordable Care Act’s contraceptive coverage requirement, alleging that it violates their companies’ religious rights, all the while disregarding their employee’s religious freedom and right to privacy and basic health services. In response to the Hobby Lobby ruling, Congress introduced the “Protect Women’s Health from Corporate Interference Act” (aka “Not My Boss’ Business Act”). The bill was intended to protect coverage of health services from employers’ religious beliefs, but was four votes short on moving forward in the Senate.

With the recent rulings firmly standing, it is important to evaluate the imbalanced impact they will have on young people. The recent Supreme Court ruling disproportionately impacts young women: 3.2 million teenage women use contraceptives and the IUD is more likely to be used by women aged 20-24 than any other age group.

The Hobby Lobby decision is fundamentally about abortion and the first amendment. Hobby Lobby wanted to exclude four specific brands of contraception from its insurance plan because they believed them to be abortifacients. As stated in the brief filed by a group of medical associations, none of these four methods of contraception are abortion. Hobby Lobby may believe that some contraceptives are abortifacients, but the courts should be obligated to rule based on facts, not a business’ erroneous beliefs.

The Supreme Court ruling addressed the Affordable Care Act contraception mandate for for-profit businesses. Now, no “closely held company” can be required to cover any method of contraception conflicting with their religion. This ruling only applies to contraceptive coverage and no other health services.

The Hobby Lobby decision will remain the governing policy on contraception coverage until Congress acts to reverse the decision through legislation. With the failure of the “Not My Boss’s Business Act” in the Senate, that seems like an impossible lift during the 113th Congress. However, as a constituent you have the right to make your voice heard about these issues. Contact your Representative and Senators today and encourage them to support justice for young people.

Young people are at the forefront of the reproductive rights, health and justice movement. We need to stand with them against these decisions that disproportionately put their health and well-being at risk. Advocates for Youth was proud to stand with and among them on June 30th and we will continue to stand with them to support their sexual and reproductive health needs and rights.

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Looking through the endless list of romance films, you’re sure to find a rather broad variety. Rom-com? Duh.  Drama? Obviously.  Quirky romance?  Done, done and done.  The list of possible subgenres is far from shocking.  On top of that, what’s even less surprising in most of these films is the fact that the two lovebirds are almost always straight.

Sure, there may be a LGBTQ character or couple in the film, but they’re almost always a secondary character, and even more importantly, they are usually present as some sort of comedic relief.  That’s not to say that these characters do not aid to the film’s mission— in fact, many of them become audience favorites.  There is no question, however, that it is a rarity for these characters to be central to the film’s love-centric storyline.

In the film “Tomorrow,” directed by Leandro Tadashi on behalf of the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts, the serious reality of finding oneself and what we truly want, regardless of sexuality, is brought to light.  This win for the LGBTQ community succeeds in the fact that a film has been made where the gay characters are not offering comedic backup, but instead, are real people that viewers can identify with.  There aren’t ridiculous jokes, but instead raw emotions.  In the film, you feel for Clark when he’s asked to be a wingman by Trevor.  You can feel the awkward tension.  You can see the pain in Clark’s eyes right before he covers it up and promises to help his friend out in various scenes.  Stereotypical flamboyancy is out and real emotions are in.

It’s no secret that the road to acceptance is no easy feat.  The contrast in “Tomorrow” over Clark’s acceptance and Trevor’s confusion is blatantly on display.  Through the use of Sarah, the typically pretty girl who is essentially stuck between the two, the film highlights the boys’ different stages of acceptance.  While Clark so easily brushes Sarah’s advances aside, it’s clear that he has internalized the fact that he is gay, regardless of the fact that he hasn’t let all of his friends know.  Trevor, on the other hand, is oh so eager to chase after the girl he “should” want to reassure himself that he isn’t actually gay.  This use of a third character is so vital in showing the different stages of acceptance that without Sarah’s presence, it would be so much harder for the audience to really pull for Clark to make something happen with Trevor.

Showcasing serious protagonists rather than the typical comedic gay character has allowed audiences of “Tomorrow” an opportunity to finally see the struggles that come with accepting one’s sexuality.  Just because you feel for the character who has already accepted who he is, doesn’t make the challenge any easier for the character who hasn’t reached that point yet.  The reality of acceptance isn’t an easy step, but then again, there’s always hope for tomorrow.

The film will be showcased in film festivals in late 2014. It is directed by a gay student director, Leandro Tadashi. He was born and raised in Brazil and holds a bachelor’s degree in film from a Sao Paulo university. Tadashi has just finished his sixth and final semester of the master’s program at the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts.  Being half-Brazilian and half-Japanese, the theme of identity has been central in Tadashi’s work both in Brazil and at USC.

“Tomorrow” is Tadashi’s sixth short film as a director.  He has also served as a production designer on over 10 short films, designed two TV show sets and recently received a grant from the Brazilian government to direct another short film in Brazil this summer.

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As the opportunity for governments and others to draw attention to key issues related to youth worldwide; UN general assembly in 1999, designated 12th August as the International Youth Day (IYD). UNESCO also defined IYD as the annual celebration of the role of young women and men as essential partners in change, as well as an opportunity to raise awareness of the challenges and hardships facing the world’s youth. It’s not only the day to deal with the youth issues, but is certainly the day to draw the attentions of the world towards the youth’s concerns.
Among various issues of youths on human rights, poverty, hunger, education, environment, health, HIV/AIDS, violence, wars, conflict, development, politics, social responsibilities, advocacy, Diplomacy etc… IYD 2014 has focused on the mental health issues of youth and titled it as the “International Youth Day 2014-Mental Health Matters”. Mental health issues are often not talked about or stigmatized, leaving them untreated and putting young people at risk. So IYD can not only for celebrating the amazing power of youths but also the important opportunity to highlight the challenges among youths.

Although youth are generally considered a healthy age group, 20 percent experience some form of mental-health condition Mental-health conditions, which include behavioral and mental-health problems e.g. depression, anxiety disorders (including post-traumatic stress disorder), and disruptive behavioral disorders (such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, mood disturbances, substance use, suicidal behavior, and aggressive/disruptive behavior) are the leading causes of adjustment problems in adolescents and young people worldwide. Given the numerous health issues affecting people in developing and low resource countries, the issue of mental health has often been considered a lower priority; yet even high-income countries have similarly de-prioritized mental health and dedicated far fewer resources to mental than to physical health. The vast majority of countries allocate less than 1 per cent of their health budgets to mental health Mental-health conditions have a significant impact on the development of over a billion youth and their social and economic integration, including employability.
Recent report of UN on Mental illness among youth has found that
 Mental health conditions are prevalent among young people
 There is considerable burden and disability associated with mental-health conditions, particularly among those for whom the problem start during youth
 Mental-health conditions have a significant impact on youth development and social and economic integration.
 Traumatic experiences, including adverse childhood events (e.g., the death of a parent, abuse, being a refugee) affect youth worldwide, but are particularly common in post-conflict or disaster settings.
 Certain youth are at particular risk of mental health conditions
 Stigma is a considerable barrier to mental health service delivery, particularly among young people.
 A public-health approach to the prevention of behavioral and mental health conditions is instrumental in addressing this issue at a global level
In Hong Kong alone, 1 in 3 people are suffering from some sort of mental disorder according to a SCMP (a local newspaper) article dated 2012. Around 200,000 people in Hong Kong are estimated to have a severe mental illness and suicide rates gas become the leading cause of death among youth aged 15 to 24 according to Centre for Suicide Research and Prevention. Based on these statistics alone, you can conclude one thing: Mental illness is real.
But the stigma continues. A lot of people think that mental illness is something that people who deal with it just to exaggerate. For instance, take depression as an example, while I admit that anyone can feel sad or lonely, I want to correct the misconception: depression is not about feeling sad all the time, depression is the suppression of feelings of sadness, anger or even happiness that causes people to feel ‘down’. Merely having a bad day or feeling lonely does not automatically make someone depressed. So many of us, put depression on our heads like we actually understand its core. Even people who actually suffer from it don’t understand it wholeheartedly.
Treatments for mental illness are not as widespread as that physical illness. Treatment is difficult to find, it’s slow, it can come back and it’s expensive. Stigma continues. Social stigma has caused people to look down on those with mental illness and it becomes a chain reaction where perceived stigma happens to the victims and treatment and recover is prolonged.
Followings are the recommendations made by the report of UN:
 More defined policies and programmes
 Efforts are needed to overcome stigma
 Improved surveillance and programme monitoring and evaluation
 Additional research is needed
First we have to understand that the sadness alone is not the depression that leads to mental illness. But this may surely leas up to that so we can make these people feel that they are not alone and make them speak up and ask for help and lastly we have to make them feel of respect. It will increase their self-confidence although it’s certain that it’s a tough work dealing with them.
The fact that this year’s theme is mental health shows the realness of the situation among the youth. Let’s end mental health stigma not only for the youth but for every warrior that have fought, are fighting and will be fighting mental illness. These people are trying to find them, let’s help them look for themselves so they can find the road to recovery.

TOP TEN SLOGANS FOR IYD-2014
1) Youth cannot know how age thinks and feels. But old men are guilty if they forget what it was to be young. – J.K Rowling
2) You are only young once, and if you work it right, once is enough. – Joe E. Lewis
3) Youth is the best time to be rich, and the best time to be poor. – Euripides
4) Young people need models, not critics. – John Wooden
5) You’re only young once, but you can be immature forever ― Germaine Greer
6) Middle age is youth without levity, and age without decay. – Doris Day
7) If I have known much trouble in my youth, I have also known much joy. – Clara Schumann
8) An inordinate passion for pleasure is the secret of remaining young. – Oscar Wilde
9) Time misspent in youth is sometimes the entire freedom one ever has. – Anita Brookner
10) Youth is wasted on the young. – George Bernard Shaw

Categories: Young People
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For a young activist in sometimes very isolated parts of Africa, one tends to think they are fighting alone or worse, be blinded by their fight. The Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI), showed me and my fellow activists, among other things, that we were not fighting this fight alone and our fight was only one of many.

Three months after receiving 50,000 applications from young Sub-Saharan Africans, the 500 who have been selected arrived in the US as the inaugural YALI class of 2014. Each of these young leaders has demonstrated a commitment to their countries or communities through civic leadership, public management or business and entrepreneurship.

Twenty universities across America hosted 25 fellows each according to their fields of interests. The program consisted of a 6-week institute including academic sessions and site visits followed by a three-day presidential summit in Washington D.C.

President Obama’s initiative, supported by IREX (International Research & Exchanges Board) is a flagship program which not only helped the fellows to learn more about different American practices in their respective fields through exchange and hands-on experience, but also to learn more from one another.

The program further included different opportunities tailored to the fellows’ interests: all 500 fellows met in DC last week for a summit hosted by president Obama during which they had an opportunity to voice their thoughts and opinions on different political and social issues in their respective countries or in the continent in general. The summit was itself a platform for fellows to work together toward solutions to address these issues during breakout sessions featuring different US Government representatives and spokespersons. Thirty six well-deserving fellows from the business and entrepreneurship track competed for and received grants to help start or fund their business; 36 others were selected for a discussion on the challenges facing girls’ education with the first lady Michelle Obama; and about 100 stayed for an additional 8-week internship for professional development and special invitations were sent to selected fellows for the US-Africa leaders summit.

As a Washington fellow myself, I have no words to even start explaining how enriching and eventful the program was. I think the majority of us went back home not only stronger of knowledge and experience but mostly stronger from each other. Today, Advocates for Youth, who has joined the Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders is opening new doors for me for a better education in sexual and reproductive health and rights. As I am writing this piece, I am reminded of a sentence one of our lecturers told us during his session and which I think, resonates with the whole philosophy of this program. He said “I don’t know better; I know different”. Today, I can echo his words and say “I have not necessarily learned better, I have learned different”. And that is what really counts at the end of the day because we are only bright and leaders enough to know what the reality is in our countries until we know, see, or experience “different”.

Categories: International
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Change marker, Future of nation, Leader, Volunteer, Power of nation… etc. above all are the duties of youth of a nation. A youth can change the nation, Youth can modify the culture and tradition youth can do anything regarding the need of the country. Youth can bring a massive number of changes in every sector. Youth are those who do things different and at same time youth are those who do don’t do different things but they do the things differently because they are youth so they think a lot. In this earth hear are so many youth who are famous all around the world forming all the sectors like singing, dancing, sports and many other things…. Youth creates opportunity for youth and youth play a vitriol role to bring it to the top. Youth do volunteering works, they do awareness programs and they are directly and indirectly working for the good sake of country. If one of the youth became the terrorist it doesn’t mean by he is beyond the country progress but it means he is trying something new there which old thoughts are not being able to understand them. Youth are those who talk about the problems and solve it. Youth always likes to try new. Only few succeed and rest fail but! Again they go with new idea and few settle in same idea but few won’t. Michel Jackson, Bob Marley, Pele, Maradona, Mike Tyson, Abram Lincoln, Hitler, William Shakespeare, leonardoda Vinci they all were youth once and they rule in their field and inspire other that’s what the Youth really are. Happy International Youth Day 2014.

Categories: Young People
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On June 26th, I sat down in a small law school auditorium in downtown San Francisco with dozens of other people, none of whom could be described by just one adjective. In fact, this collective group of people ranged from young professionals to the eccentric enthusiast. Some of them had personal stories, while others did not. For some, they were there for work, and others because of passion. However, all of them had gathered to take part in what I initially thought to be a beneficial discussion on the future of HIV/AIDS. With the International AIDS Conference right around the corner, it was no light matter when discussing the future of HIV/AIDS; before we step onto the international stage, our nation needed to have a serious discussion. And what better city to discuss the future than where some of the earliest outbreaks of HIV/AIDS were found? The panel of speakers was made up of several local government officials, but the focus was clearly on the representatives of our nation’s executive branch. It was no surprise that most attendees were attentively listening to what they had to say. Dr. Andrew Forsyth began with several updates on the National HIV/AIDS Strategy goals. The nation has made many gains in this fight against HIV but there is still a long way to go. Some of the data he presented gave a clear indication that young people must be at the center of this discussion. Young people, specifically young African Americans, are least likely to remain in long term care for HIV/AIDS and are least likely to achieve viral suppression. Furthermore, compared to 2008, even though the percentage of new infections has been falling among many demographic groups, it has increased by 22% in young MSM. What I like about data is that they are cold hard facts. It is clear what the numbers Dr. Forsyth presented meant, the importance of providing care to young people. Though the data showed an obvious trend, Dr. Forsyth did not quite outline the specifics of how young people would be involved or how the Office of National AIDS Policy would make revisions to its strategy to target the populations at risk, as evidenced by the data. I figured, perhaps this was just an update on numbers; surely the next speaker, the director of ONAP, would have more to say about how the nation would be targeting its strategy for those who need it most. Douglass Brooks, director of ONAP, took the stage and gave a lengthy discussion on the nine Priorities of the National HIV AIDS Strategy. These nine priorities are as follows: Continued HIV Care for Patients, the Intersection of Violence Against Women and Girls and HIV, monitoring the Affordable Care Act coordination, Aligning Federal Resources with Epidemiologic Data, Developing Public-Private Partnerships, Employment Opportunities for Patients, Updating the 2015 Targets, HIV in the South, and HIV Among Gay Men. On paper, all nine of these priorities are important. I thought numbers two and five were especially important. But what I did notice was not one priority was solely dedicated to young people. It seems that the epidemiologic data wasn’t enough to justify dedicating a priority to young people. Nonetheless, the discussion Mr. Brooks began was important to help those with HIV/AIDS be brought into the healthcare system and be monitored for continued care. Several other speakers spoke on local HIV/AIDS in California and San Francisco. San Francisco is an important model city where the data for number of virally suppressed individuals is much greater than that of many cities in our country. It finally came to the question answer session. I stood up and knew exactly what I wanted to ask: what would ONAP specifically be doing to involve young people in their strategy and what revisions would be made to the current strategy to ensure there would be a focus on young people. I stood in line, a piece of paper with a few notes and key words jotted down…and alas, I wasn’t allowed to ask my question. It’s funny how time restraints work out. I sat back down for the second half of the session, a greater focus on local issues. By chance, during this part, I ran into Mr. Brooks in the restroom. I thought, what better way to start up a conversation, albeit, not in the most ideal location. Mr. Brooks assured me that he was working with organizations just like mine to ensure young people are involved on his steering committee. He seemed to be saying exactly what any young advocate would want to hear. We both sat back down. It was time for the second question-answer session. This time, I made sure I was at the front of the line. My question was on the partnerships ONAP would be developing with the Department of Education to ensure comprehensive sexual education would be available to students across the country, something that can have a huge impact in the fight against HIV/AIDS. My question was directed exclusively to Mr. Brooks, but it seemed that Dr. Forsyth of the DHHS had something to say. He answered by saying that the Federal government had a “great appreciation” for this issue, but it was something that had to be dealt with at a “local level, not at a federal level.” I was taken aback by his comments. A local issue? What exactly does “great appreciation” even mean? Maybe Mr. Brooks would have more to say. At that point, an older woman sitting at the back of the room stood up and shouted, “It is a federal issue, it is your issue!” An unassuming partner in the room had just supported something I wanted to say but couldn’t. The moderator tried to calm the situation, and when he asked Mr. Brooks if he had anything to add, he shook his head and that was the end of my question. I was surprised that the Director of ONAP had absolutely nothing to say, and instead, simply shook his head to a question that was asked directly to him. The fight against HIV/AIDS is a long journey, but with the right tools, data, and leadership it is something our nation can win. However, if this regional HIV/AIDS policy session was any indication, then our nation requires a lot more dialogue and discussion on the issues surrounding HIV/AIDS, specifically on young people, comprehensive sexual education, and access to the services that will improve their overall quality of life.

Categories: HIV
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Are you tired of politicians interfering in your personal health decisions? Fed up with the growing number of states that are making it ever more difficult to access abortion care?

Be Bold Road Trip

Yeah, so are we. That’s why were are linking up with All* Above All for their Be Bold Road Trip! This summer, All* Above All, a campaign to restore and sustain abortion coverage, is traveling around the country visiting 12 cities, 8 states and covering more than 10,000 miles to build nationwide support and call on Congress to stop denying critical abortion coverage and health care services to low-income women.

The #BraveMobile Kicks-Off Aug 9 in California. Can you join them? Know a friend that should? Click here to find a friend that should see the tour in their town.

Visit the #bravemobile to learn more about abortion coverage bans, sign a wall of support for lifting these restrictions, snap selfies, and hear abortion stories that bring the issues to life. Ultimately we want to send the message to politicians in Washington, DC, that we’ve had enough of them interfering in personal decision-making.

It’s time to for us to unite and lift the bans that deny abortion coverage to low income women. RSVP YOURSELF and a FRIEND for the BE BOLD TOUR.