In January, we surveyed YOU to find out what sexual and reproductive health issues you believe President Obama should pay most attention to in his second term in office. Over a thousand of you responded! You named supporting comprehensive sex education and eliminating abstinence-only programs; policies which support lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender youth; and ensuring access to abortion care for women around the world.
We also gave you the opportunity to respond to the survey in your own words, and the feedback was great. Here are just a few excerpts:
• “Treat young people as full citizens and as deserving of the information and services they need to navigate their sexual and reproductive lives in healthy ways.”
• “The most important thing he can do is remain consistent with the message he will not tolerate or authorize any policy that supports gender inequality or oppression. “
• “See sexuality education as more than pregnancy and STI prevention. See it as supporting healthy development in young people and supporting healthy relationships!”
• “Protect abortion rights for all women!”
• “Meet and consult with young people in the US and internationally to inform policies and interventions.”
• “It is critical that there be LGBT inclusion in sex education. Without it, bullying will continue, ignorance will continue, HIV infections will continue to rise, and ultimately lives will continue to be lost.”
• “I want the president to recognize the threat of HIV/AIDS to all people, especially young people, and to fund ways to reach out and organize young people in the fight against HIV/AIDS.”
• “Please move us forward, not backward! Sexuality is a part of being human. Must we treat it like something that’s dirty? Let’s teach our children and young adults the facts, not myths and morality. They can make good choices if they have the facts.”
We agree. We’ll keep up the pressure on this Administration (and on Congress!) to support young people’s reproductive and sexual health and rights through comprehensive sexual health education, access to contraception, inclusion of and protections for LGBT youth, and access to abortion care.