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Check out this video from activist Ramona, from Romania, in honor of International Women and Girls Day!

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In honor of National Abortion Provider Appreciation Day, we asked abortion providers to describe their experiences and why they do the work they do.  Show a provider your appreciation today.

Thirty percent of women will have an abortion by the time they are 45. Thirty percent. That means that two or three of the nine ob/gyns in my residency class will have obtained an abortion during their reproductive lives. They will be joined by 4,000 undergraduate students at the University of Maryland, my alma mater. Unfortunately, 87 percent of …

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Thanks to Women Accepting Responsibility‘s Growing Up Program for sharing this video in honor of International Women and Girls Day!

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Natasha from India, on why International Women’s Day is important.

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In honor of National Abortion Provider Appreciation Day, we asked abortion providers to describe their experiences and why they do the work they do.  Show a provider your appreciation today.

When I think about providing abortions and helping women self-induce abortions, I rarely think, “Why am I doing this?” More often I think, “Why are other health care providers not doing this?” As a women’s health care provider, I am invested in the well-being of my individual patients but also in the collective health of women in society. Not …

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Today the House of Representatives reauthorized the Violence Against Women’s Act – a version we actually like which includes provisions specific to college students, native American women, LGBT people and immigrant women. VAWA covers a lot of territory. Some of its most known benefits include funding for shelters and programs to prevent domestic violence. Now the bill is off to the President to sign and become law, so take a minute to celebrate all your hard work in making this a reality!…

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by Julia, Manager, Youth Activist Network

sonyarenee

 

Last fall I had the honor of meeting poet and activist Sonya Renee at Advocates’ annual training of youth activists. Her spoken word performance moved us and her passion inspired us to keep up the fight for social and reproductive justice.

That’s why I am so thrilled to share with you Sonya Renee’s videos for the 1 in 3 Campaign. Sonya Renee has shared her own abortion story, and has also shared two important spoken word pieces about the importance of …

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Last Thursday, Senator Frank Lautenberg (NJ) and Representative Barbara Lee (CA-13) introduced the Real Education for Healthy Youth Act! This bill lays out a comprehensive, age-appropriate, and holistic vision for sex education in the United States.

Ask your Members of Congress to help make the bill a reality!

Young people have the right to lead healthy lives.  To have healthy lives, young people need sex education programs which provide them with the information and skills necessary to make healthy decisions – and that includes medically accurate and complete information …

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obamastateofunion2013

Last night during the State of the Union address, President Obama reiterated his call for an AIDS-free Generation. In a speech that discussed some of our nation’s greatest challenges, we were glad to hear that the President still considers HIV and AIDS a priority for our nation. However, too often in this fight, young people and their needs are left out or ignored. That’s why young people from across the country have joined together to call for the first ever National Youth HIV & AIDS Awareness Day to …

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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 …

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by Trina Scott, Senior Program Manager, Young Women of Color Empowerment 

National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day is a national HIV testing and treatment community mobilization initiative targeted at Blacks in the United States and the Diaspora. We’ll betweeting and posting on Facebook about events and resources throughout the day to#NBHAAD – follow us and re-tweet!

Recently I visited with students at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) around the country to help them plan their February 7 events and what I saw was amazing. From candlelight vigils for …

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House Bill 1081, AKA “The Sex Ed Bill” is scheduled to be heard in its first House Committee tomorrow! In order to ensure that Colorado’s students have ACCESS to comprehensive sex ed,  contact your legislators today!

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We’re thrilled to share this great op-ed by Amplify youth contributor Hannah, published this week in The Advocate. Hannah shares her moving personal story and urges LGBT organizations to prioritize young people most in need.

“Before I could even register what happened, I suddenly found myself without a legal residence, car, phone, or insurance of any kind. I was kicked out with just the clothes on my back. Pleas of reconnecting with my parents were met with “We’re done with you” or “You’re forbidden to come back. You …

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by Katie Stack, reproductive justice activist and speaker.

This week an estimated 500,000 people marched in Washington, D.C. for the annual anti-abortion March for Life. Reports suggest a large number of young people in attendance, which is being used to bolster the notion that young people are overwhelmingly identified as prolife. While it’s true that recent polls suggest that many young Americans do favor the prolife label, I do not believe that it means that they will become adults who are blindly committed to criminalizing abortion.

As someone who …

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by Kate Stewart, Executive Vice President for Public Affairs

Should a woman’s access to safe abortion care be determined by her income level?

Ask President Obama to stand strong and protect access to safe abortion care for ALL women.

Last week, we marked the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the historic decision that made abortion legal in the United States. But while Roe was an important victory, it wasn’t the end of the fight to ensure all women have access to safe, affordable abortion care.

Millions of …

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by Ana Laura Rivera
Student Activist, Advocates for Youth

Political institutions play a critical role in Latina women and their right to decide for their future.  Primarily, in the state of Texas, Latina women face extreme challenges having the right to access free and safe abortion access. Privilege and power are two elements that affect Latina women in Texas and their rights to raise their voice and obtain the basic needs. This paper focuses on how privilege and power affect young women of color, especially young Latinas and mothers …

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by Hannah McClure Baron
Student Activist, Advocates for Youth

In reproductive justice and abortion advocacy I found myself supported and excited talking to other activists, women who have had abortions, and like-minded friends.  We passionately discussed the need for legal, affordable, and accessible abortions and our arguments were well-researched and coordinated.  Together, in an encouraging and personal as opposed to confrontational and political climate, we could comfortably and confidently discuss abortion activism because we shared the same basic goals and values of legality, affordability, and accessibility. Yet, all too …

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by Nicole Massa

Since I started doing work in the field of reproductive rights and sexual health, I am often asked the question: “Why do you want to do this?”  My reply each time is that I believe sexual health isn’t spoken about enough – and I need to make a difference in the world by helping connect all people with the information and services they need. Sexual health and reproductive rights are incredibly important. And, in my eyes, Roe v. Wade was such a huge turning point for …

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by Hannah McClure Baron

In reproductive justice and abortion advocacy I found myself supported and excited talking to other activists, women who have had abortions, and like-minded friends.  We passionately discussed the need for legal, affordable, and accessible abortions and our arguments were well-researched and coordinated.  Together, in an encouraging and personal as opposed to confrontational and political climate, we could comfortably and confidently discuss abortion activism because we shared the same basic goals and values of legality, affordability, and accessibility. Yet, all too often, while I was seeking …

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by Eriauna Stratton 

Through the 1 in 3 Campaign with Advocates for Youth, our student organization VOX (Voices for Planned Parenthood) has been able to greatly increase our efforts toward destigmatizing abortion and change how we talk about abortion. Our VOX chapter was founded at the University of Kentucky in 2008, and it remains the only pro-choice organization on campus.

When my colleague and I first told the rest of our organization that we were joining the 1 in 3 Campaign, they were reluctant to participate. Even in a …

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A video by Tanisha, a former campus organizer and current activist with the 1 in 3 Campaign.

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by Julia Reticker-Flynn, Manager, Youth Activist Network. 

Nearly two years ago, I was sitting in our conference room, and I was frustrated. We all were. We were discussing the unprecedented number of anti-abortion bills being proposed—and passed—in state legislatures around the country: waiting periods designed to harass women, unnecessary clinic regulations, parental notification laws, among others. We were watching anti-choice legislation replicate from state to state in real time, knowing that these laws would have harmful consequences in the lives of real people, especially young people.

We were tired …

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1in3-book-500x500

by Debra Hauser, President

Today, I am proud to announce the release of the book 1 in 3: These Are Our Stories.

I remained silent about my own abortion for 15 years. Now, as I share my story around the country, more often than not, other women offer up theirs in response. Some are family and friends whom I have known for years; others are complete strangers. The result is a bond, stronger than the anti-abortion rhetoric or the fear of retaliation or violence that too often finds its …

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Today’s young people have never known a world without HIV. The path to ending the epidemic is long and challenging. But there is one step you can take that’s easy, yet very valuable:

Call on President Obama to recognize the National Youth HIV & AIDS Awareness Day!

Thousands of youth activists have called for a National Youth HIV & AIDS Awareness Day – a nationwide call to action for our communities, schools and government to invest in young people’s health, education, and leadership in the fight against HIV & …

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Just wanted to share this great letter to the editor of the Washington Post, written by Natasha Vianna and published today!

When teens become parents, their lives become more hectic, and they face new challenges. Programs like the one The Post featured help us stay on track. But too many people continue to hold the misconception that supporting teen parents encourages teen pregnancy.

Read the rest!

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Happy New Year! We at Advocates for Youth are excited about the possibilities for 2013 and beyond. As Inauguration Day approaches, we’d love to know what YOU think President Obama’s priorities for reproductive and sexual health and rights should be in his second term.

Take a brief, 2-question survey about young people’s sexual and reproductive health and rights in President Obama’s second term

We’ll use your responses to keep pushing the Obama administration – and to shape our own work. So make your voice heard today – fill out

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Katie Stack is a reproductive justice activist and speaker.

The latest TIME magazine cover story features an expose on the abortion debate, and author Kate Pickert concludes that in the abortion war, the pro-choice side is losing.

While she largely ignores the advances made by women of color and reproductive justice organizations, in many ways she is correct. For while abortion remains legal, it is now harder and more costly to obtain one in most states. Abortion continues to be one of the most contentious political issues, and as …

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We’re thrilled to host this guest piece by Katie Stack, reproductive justice activist and speaker.

The changes to abortion coverage for survivors of rape in the military may not be quite the victory that we would like it to be – because rape exceptions rarely come to fruition for women seeking abortion care.

This past Tuesday a bipartisan committee of House and Senate members approved an amendment to the Defense Authorization bill that would end the ban on abortion coverage for victims of rape. In doing so Congress is …

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Since we posted this last week, there has been some good news. Thanks to outcry from around the world, action on the anti-homosexuality bill in Uganda’s parliament has been postponed at least until February. And, Uganda’s President Museveni has spoken out against the bill’s call for the death penalty.

There is still much work to be done – Uganda remains very dangerous for LGBT people and for activists working on these issues. But with commitment and effort, we can all help to make it safer. We’ll keep you

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Hope you’ve already signed the petition asking Secretary Sebelius to follow the science and make emergency contraception available over-the-counter without age restriction.   Don’t miss this entry from last year when the decision came down; it’s still relevant!

Common Sense Isn’t So Common:  How Preventing Access to EC hurts young women of color

 …

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A year ago today, Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius took the unprecedented step of overriding the FDA’s recommendation to make Plan B emergency contraception available over-the-counter without age restrictions.  That’s right – scientists recommended the over-the-counter status, finding the drug safe for young women under 17. But the Obama administration denied it, ignoring the evidence in favor of politics.

Join us in taking action:

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Great op-ed by Advocates board member and IYLC member Meredith in the Global Post!

Half of the world’s population is under 30 years old, and these youth comprise the most well-informed and well-connected generation the world has ever known.

We have the fortune of joining nearly 1,000 of these youth in Bali, Indonesia this week – not sightseeing, but formulating the international development agenda for the future.

Read the article

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Advocates for Youth campus organizers Kate and Reed wrote a piece for their campus newspaper the Harvard Crimson last week on how the campus can address “rape culture” or failure to take adequate measures to prevent sexual assault.  Last night, they held a speak out, or “gathering of people dedicated to creating a safe space in which they can share their experience with rape culture and listen to the voices of others.”  Crimson staff also covered the event.

Says Kate:

“Rape culture really comes down to a set

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Through The Time is Now, activists seek to bring consideration of gender balance and reproductive and sexual health and rights to climate change discussions.  Last week there was a major victory in the campaign, as activists at the UN’s Climate Change Conference in Doha, Qatar, succcessfully advocated for language around gender equality and the representation of women at future climate change conferences – important because women are disproportionately impacted by climate change.  Advocates alumni youth activist, former colleague, and current consultant Mimi Melles explains further:

Be sure to …

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This week,  several Advocates staff and youth activists are at the ICPD Global Youth Forum.  We had to share this recap that Advocates’ Director of Public Policy Janine Kossen sent to staff!

Hi all,

I just wanted to let you know that International Youth Leadership Council member Meredith was ah-mazing at the Global Youth Forum this morning (last night for you all). If you don’t know, she was chosen among thousands of youth applicants to be the youth respondent for a plenary session, sitting right next to the …

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Motivated youth activists in Illinois are advocating for the passage of House Bill 3027, the Accurate Sexual Health Education Bill. Watch the video, and if you live in Illinois, support their efforts!

 

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About World AIDS Day

Getting to Zero: What will it take to get to an AIDS Free Generation?
Each year, December 1 marks World AIDS Day, when activists around the world come together to raise awareness of the global HIV epidemic, fight stigma and discrimination, and advocate for increased efforts to support comprehensive HIV education and prevention.

The ongoing theme of “Getting to Zero,” supported by UNAIDS’ multi-year HIV/AIDS strategy for Zero New Infections, Zero AIDS Related Deaths, and Zero Discrimination, is an opportunity for young people to speak …

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This summer, during the International AIDS Conference, youth activists from across the country called on the President to establish the first ever National Youth HIV & AIDS Awareness Day.

The road to an AIDS-free generation begins by prioritizing youth. Today’s young people are the first generation that has never known a world without HIV and AIDS. In the United States, almost 40% of new HIV infections are young people ages 13 to 29. Despite this harsh reality, young people and their allies are determined to end this pandemic …

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Check out this entry on Huff Post by Advocates for Youth’s own fantastic Youth Activist Network Coordinator, Ian O’Brien (also known as amplify user AFY_Ian)! It features an interview with GACC safesite Jeremiah at St. John’s University in New York!

Trojan Sexual Health Report Card Sparks Action

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by Deb Hauser
President, Advocates for Youth

Advocates for Youth congratulates President Barack Obama on his historic reelection. We also celebrate the amazing role that young people played within his administration and his reelection, and we recognize the growing power of youth to drive social and cultural change for a better world. Young people represented approximately 19 percent of the electorate yesterday—a larger percentage even than in 2008!

In the years ahead, we call on President Obama to stand with us in recognition of every young person’s right to …

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Advocates for Youth seeks a fluent Spanish speaker and writer to serve in the International Youth Health and Rights Division. The International Youth Health and Rights Division houses the AmbienteJoven web site (www.ambientejoven.org), a site for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and queer/questioning (GLBTQ) youth in Spanish-speaking Latin America and the Caribbean that provides sexual health information and resources. Advocates is currently recruiting a writer to develop features for the web site.

Advocates for Youth is dedicated to creating programs and promoting policies that help young people make informed and …

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…for continuing to be such an awesome youth activist!

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Welcome to (the new) Amplify!

Since Amplify launched on January 1, 2009, tens of thousands of you have participated in campaigns, sent letters to legislators and other decision makers, and contributed blogs, pictures, and videos. You made Amplify the diverse, informed, engaged community that it is – and one that has over a million visitors every year. We at Advocates for Youth are awed by your commitment to youth reproductive and sexual health and rights – and honored to be a part of your activism.

That’s why it brings us such great pleasure to …

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South Carolina

In South Carolina, young people are working to make comprehensive sex education a reality in their state. SWARM (Students With A Responsible Message), a project of Advocates for Youth and Tell Them SC leads the work of a statewide youth activist network that advocates for comprehensive sexual health education.  Here’s a picture of the youth council members in training in August!

 …

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Learn more about reproductive and sexual health in Florida, and why Florida’s youth activists do the work they do!

Florida’s Youth: Focus on Sexual and Reproductive Health

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In Florida, young people are working to make comprehensive sex education a reality in their state. The Broward County Youth Council, a project of Advocates for Youth and Planned Parenthood of South Florida and the Treasure Coast, leads the work of a statewide youth activist network that advocates for comprehensive sexual health education.  Here’s a picture of some of the council members at the 2012 Urban Retreat!

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Learn more about young people’s sexual and reproductive health in Colorado and why Colorado’s youth activists do what they do!

Colorado’s Youth: Focus on Sexual and Reproductive Health

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In Colorado, young people are working to make comprehensive sex education a reality in their state. Colorado Youth Create, a project of Advocates for Youth and Colorado Youth Matter, leads the work of a statewide youth activist network that advocates for comprehensive sexual health education.  Here’s a picture of some of the council members on their way to tell their Senators and Representatives about the importance of good sex ed!

 

 …

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Young people at Advocates’ partner organization Forward Together  surveyed and interviewed students to get more in-depth information about the sex education young people want to see in their school. Check it out!

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In California, young people are working to make comprehensive sex education a reality in their state.  California’s state sex ed leadership council, a project of Advocates for Youth and Forward Together, leads the work of a statewide youth activist network that advocates for comprehensive sexual health education.

Youth activists from California, at the Capitol and ready to lobby!

 …

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Each year over 120 youth activists gather in Washington, D.C. to share expertise with one another and Advocates for Youth staff; learn about the latest findings and legislation that affect reproductive health; participate in trainings; and make a commitment to be lifelong advocates for young people’s reproductive and sexual health and rights. Then they head to Capitol Hill to educate their representatives on why comprehensive sexual health education is so important for young people.

 

Groups attending the conference included:

1 in 3 Organizers.  These college students attend …

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Check out this brand new factsheet about youth sexual and reproductive health in Alabama.  It’s full of info about why youth activists do the work they do and what they hope to accomplish in their state.

Alabama’s Youth: Focus on Reproductive and Sexual Health

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In Alabama, young people are working to make comprehensive sex education a reality in their state.  The Youth Activist Council, a project of Advocates for Youth and Alabama Alliance for Healthy Youth, leads the work of a statewide youth activist network that advocates for comprehensive sexual health education.  Here’s a picture of some of the council members on their way to tell their Senators and Representatives about the importance of good sex ed!

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This past week, our distinguished colleagues over at the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health have been collecting stories from across the country for the Latina Week of Action 2012. As the folks at NLIRH explain:

Even as Latinas continue to face unprecedented attacks on the health of our communities and the dignity of immigrant families, we are determined to lead the fight for reproductive justice. This year, we join our hermanas at California Latinas for Reproductive Justice and the Colorado Organization for Latina Opportunity and Reproductive Rights for

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by Deb Hauser, President, Advocates for Youth

You did it! Because of your work, today we celebrate a victory.

Last winter, the Milton Hershey School publicly refused admission to a 13-year-old student simply because he is HIV positive even though living with an HIV-positive person poses no risk to others. In response, thousands of you mobilized friends and signed the petition demanding that the school change this misguided, discriminatory policy.

Yesterday, they did just that! Under advisement from the Department of Justice, school administrators announced that they have reversed …

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Exciting news! Applications to become a Great American Condom Campaign Fall Semester SafeSite are now open!

The Great American Condom Campaign is a youth-led grassroots movement to reduce unintended pregnancies and the spread of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections by normalizing condom use on college and university campuses. Students from across the country apply to become SafeSites — individual condom distribution points — and upon selection receive a box of 500 Trojan condoms to distribute to their peers. SafeSites are also tasked with educating their peers about safer …

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We just sent out the following action alert. If you have two minutes today, call your Representative and tell them to support National Youth HIV & AIDS Awareness Day!

"If we put young people at the forefront — if we prioritize young people as key partners — we can get to an AIDS-free generation. Young people have the power to prevent HIV, but we can’t do it alone. All of us have to be in this fight together. Which is why in this place, at this time, at this

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Here’s an email we sent out to our list today, celebrating tomorrow’s beginning of ACA contraception provisions!  

On August 1, 2012, under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), private insurance plans will begin to cover the cost of birth control — meaning millions of women will no longer have to pay the up to $600 a year that birth control can cost.

Most young women with insurance will soon be able to choose among birth-control methods — oral contraception, injectables, the ring, IUDs, and others. They will be able

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Ian O’Brien, Youth Activist Network Coordinator, reflects on "Young People Leading the Fight Against HIV/AIDS – US and Global Perspectives on How to Make a Difference," a panel held last night at the International AIDS Conference.


“Change can’t happen if we’re not involved in it.” Lawrence Stallworth’s words synthesized the sentiments expressed by panelists at a panel on youth activism in the global HIV/AIDS movement during the 2012 International AIDS Conference.

The coolest part about this panel was that youth were involved, and people were listening.

Stallworth joined four …

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The following article was originally published on The Huffington Post.

Just a few hours ago, among hundreds of young activists committed to fighting HIV and AIDS, we announced the creation of — and called on the U.S. government to officially recognize — National Youth HIV & AIDS Awareness Day.

This week, political leaders, health experts and government representatives join advocates from around the globe here in Washington, D.C., for the 19th International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2012). But even as high profile leaders like Secretary of State Hillary Clinton …

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As thousands of delegates from around the world gather for the XIX International AIDS Conference in Washington, the NAMES Project AIDS Memorial Quilt, one of the most prominent symbols of the global response, was unveiled across the metropolitan DC area.

UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibé and UNAIDS Goodwill Ambassador Annie Lennox joined the NAMES Project Foundation, several high-level personalities and around 300 members of the YouthForce activist alliance at the unveiling ceremony at the Mall.

From UNAIDS

NAMES Project Executive Director Julie Rhoad

Advocates for Youth’s own Ryan and Durryle

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Crossposted from www.youthaids2012.org.

Throughout the YouthForce 2012 preconference to the International AIDS Conference in Washington, DC, over 130 young activists and leaders collaborated to create the YouthForce Declaration – a document that details the policy and programmatic demands of youth in the global response to HIV and AIDS. Powered by codigital, the YouthForce Declaration project allowed participants to submit, edit, and vote on ideas in realtime.



The YouthForce Declaration: Top 10 Ideas

All young people have the right to sexual and reproductive health services that are accessible, available, safe, affordable, quality-approved, …

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Advocates for Youth is partnering with the Names Project to support their efforts to unveil the AIDS Memorial Quilt during this year’s International AIDS Conference in Washington, DC.

The AIDS Memorial Quilt Opening Ceremony
Saturday, July 21 – 8:00am to 12:00pm
The National Mall – Washington, DC

Interested in volunteering at the ceremony? Click here to sign up >>

Thirty years into the HIV/AIDS epidemic, young leaders from the U.S. and around the world have a special opportunity to unfold The Quilt on the very first day to highlight …

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Aimee Thorne-Thomsen, Advocates for Youth’s Vice President for Strategic Partnerships, recently joined Anna Holmes, founding editor of Jezebel.com, and Jessica Valenti, a Nation blogger and Feministing.com co-founder, for a lively and illuminating chat on feminist and youth activism (among other topics).

A special thanks to The Nation for hosting this discussion. Click here to read the full transcript. And here’s an excerpt from the chat:

Jacy Montoya Price: How do we overcome the perception that young people don’t care about reproductive rights? Or does it matter?

Aimee Thorne-Thomsen:

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Ready to contribute to the blogathon? Click here to log in. Or, click here to sign up for an Amplify account.

July 11 is World Population Day — a time to call attention to the essential role that reproductive health plays in creating a just and equitable world.

This year’s World Population Day theme is critical to young people — Universal Access to Reproductive Health Services. On this day, world leaders will meet in London to call for unprecedented international political commitment and resources to provide an additional 120 …

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Independence Day is less than two weeks away! From now through July 4, we hope you’ll join us to show the country that young people are still standing up for birth control!

In February, the Obama administration affirmed its commitment to women’s health care and issued a rule requiring birth control coverage without co-pays under the health care law. It makes sense: Birth control is basic, preventive health care.

Despite a solution that upholds women’s health AND guarantees that insurance companies — not religious colleges or institutions — foot …

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A young gay man is constantly and violently bullied by his classmates.

He asks his school administration for help.

They say he needs to “tone down” his flamboyant behavior, and stop wearing girls’ clothes.

We saw this story in California in 2008, when Lawrence King was ultimately murdered by a classmate who had been tormenting him for months. School officials, defense attorneys, and commentators all maintained that Lawrence shouldn’t have worn high heels and lipstick – that his outrageous get-ups enraged his murderer. That he, Lawrence, held the …

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Thursday, May 17 Is the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia!
A day to put LGBT rights on the global agenda

It is well-known that the LGBT community continues to face discrimination, stigma, and violence worldwide. No less than 76 countries around the world still consider homosexuality illegal and in 5 of them, homosexual acts are punishable by death. In almost all countries, transphobic laws limit the freedom not to act as socially determined by one person’s sex at birth.

May 17th provides an opportunity to pay tribute to …

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Advocates for Youth is proud to join a coalition of organizations participating in Strong Families’ Mama’s Day 2012 — a campaign to lift up and celebrate the mamas and others among us who do the amazing, inspiring, and often grueling work of raising our kids and anchoring our families.

Mama’s Day is a way to build a new definition of mamahood – a diverse collection of voices to explore and appreciate the complexities of building our families – beyond just Sunday brunch once a year. As Strong Families explains:…

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This post is a contribution to Strong Families’ Mama’s Day 2012 — a campaign to lift up and celebrate the mamas and others among us who do the amazing, inspiring, and often grueling work of raising our kids and anchoring our families. Click here to learn more and get involved.

My name is Sandra Lubian.

I am 18-years-old and a senior in high school, and I have a 9-month-old baby named Adrian Giovanni. He has to be the best thing that has ever happened to me. I first …

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This post is a contribution to Strong Families’ Mama’s Day 2012 — a campaign to lift up and celebrate the mamas and others among us who do the amazing, inspiring, and often grueling work of raising our kids and anchoring our families. Click here to learn more and get involved.

By Ebony Ross, Advocates for Youth

Who knew that your heart could expand this much and feel so overwhelmed with love and joy? I know; it feels wonderful and extremely scary at the same time. To hold this …

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Hi All- We just sent this action alert about the Obama administration’s decision to officially endorse an abstinence-only-until-marriage program. See the message below…if you have a minute today, click here to take action.

Want to read more about this news? Read our analysis on RH Reality Check.


Dear Advocate-

"Everything is just as you have seen it in a million daydreams…The flowers you spent so much time choosing fill the room like soft perfume. Your true love stands at the front. You are ready to trust …

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This week the Senate could be voting on the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women’s Act (S. 1925) (VAWA). While VAWA has previously been a strongly bipartisan bill and even currently has 61 co-sponsors in the Senate, there have been efforts from the extreme right wing in the Senate to pull out key provisions of the real VAWA meant to protect some of the most vulnerable.

Call these Senators now and ask them to support the real Violence Against Women’s Act!

Why? Because VAWA has improved the criminal …

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Are you a young person (14-24 years old) who is…

  • Passionate about fighting for young people’s rights to sexual health information and services?
  • Interested in connecting with youth leaders from across the country?
  • Dedicated to developing skills to make a difference in your community?

Consider applying for one of Advocates for Youth’s programs! See all of the available opportunities below.

If selected, you will have opportunities to: develop new organizing and leadership skills; become informed on sexual and reproductive health issues; connect with passionate young people from across the …

Profile photo of Amplify_Staff
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Editor’s Note: This is the first post from Steph Herold, a new occasional guest contributor here at Amplify. Steph is the founder of IAmDrTiller.com, a space for celebrating the work of abortion providers, and AbortionGang.org, a blog for young people in the reproductive justice movement. She proudly serves on the Board of Directors of the New York Abortion Access Fund and lives in Brooklyn, NY. Find her on twitter at @IAmDrTiller.

One of the last places I’d expect to see the honest depictions of young people’s experiences with …

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By Andrea Miller, NARAL Pro-Choice New York/NIRH

Editor’s Note: This article was cross-posted from RH Reality Check’s 2012 Back Up Your Birth Control series.

The claim started out on the lips of the Catholic bishops and anti-choice activists: Obamacare will mandate coverage for abortion-causing drugs – by which they meant emergency contraception (EC), a form of birth control (BC) that does not actually terminate a pregnancy. But that little detail didn’t seem to matter. Soon anti-choice politicians jumped on the bandwagon. Before long the mainstream media was …

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Editor’s Note: Rachel Lloyd is the Executive Director and Founder of Girls Education & Mentoring Services (GEMS), a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting girls and young women survivors of commercial sexual exploitation in the United States. She played an instrumental role in the passage of New York’s Safe Harbor Act for Sexually Exploited Youth, the first U.S. law of its kind to end the prosecution of child victims of sex trafficking.

Rachel is also the author of Girls Like Us: Fighting for a World Where Girls Are

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They’re still at it: Republican Senators are still trying to deny you access to birth control. An important vote on whether or not to deny women access to contraception is happening tomorrow — if you have a few minutes, please call your Senators today and tell them to oppose the Blunt Amendment.

More info (and a handy call-in script) below:

Tomorrow, the U.S. Senate will vote on whether or not to deny women access to contraception.

Republican Senators have decided to hijack a major transportation bill by attaching …

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By Amanda Marcotte

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on RH Reality Check.

Nancy Scola has a piece at Salon on the Republican delusion that the newly loud anti-choice war on contraception can somehow be repackaged as “religious liberty” and sold to the public, accomplishing the real goal–undermining women’s fundamental right not to just basic health care but also to make their own sexual and family decisions–and dressing it up as a fight for freedom. The strategy is to cast “religious liberty” as such a broad right, …

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Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on the CLPP website. The 2012 CLPP conference, "From Abortion Rights to Social Justice: Building the Movement for Reproductive Freedom," will be held from April 13 to April 15, 2012 at Hampshire College in Amherst, Massachusetts.

Getting to the CLPP conference can be expensive! We are committed to bringing together student and community activists who are most affected by reproductive injustices — and who are on the front lines of creating reproductive justice!

As part of this commitment, we have fundraising …

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Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on RH Reality Check.

By Jodi Jacobson

In his testimony at the February 16th, 2012 House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform hearing on the contraceptive coverage mandate under health reform, the Most Reverend William E. Lori, the Bishop of Bridgeport and spokesman for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), defended the claim of "religious freedom" by comparing the provision of essential primary health care for women to a kosher deli being forced to serve pork.

I’ll call it …

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February 14 to 21, 2012 is National Condom Week!

Make a donation of $25 or more to Advocates for Youth this week, and we’ll send you our new Great American Condom Campaign t-shirt!

The Great American Condom Campaign (GACC) is a youth-led grassroots movement to make the United States a sexually healthy nation.

Each year, Advocates provides more than one million Trojan brand condoms to students who serve as "SafeSites" on college and university campuses across the country. The students distribute condoms, educate their peers about sexual and reproductive …

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This week alone, you’ve sent more than 3,500 letters to President Obama and Congress asking them to fight back against attacks on birth control insurance coverage. And they have heard you loud and clear.

This morning, President Obama reaffirmed that women will be able to access no-copay birth control. If your employer has decided not to provide contraceptive coverage on religious grounds, insurance companies will be required to provide no-copay birth control coverage to you directly. While the Catholic Health Association has already come out in support of this …

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Here’s a handy infographic and timeline about social conservatives’ ever-ambitious War on Contraception. Help us spread the word — post this on your Facebook profile and elsewhere!

Click the preview below to see the image in full:

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NEW ACTION ALERT: If you have a minute, send a message to President Obama and your Members of Congress: Tell them to stand up for birth control access! See the message below for more info.


Dear Advocate-

This year, you have already proven how truly powerful grassroots activists can be. I wish we had time to simply celebrate these victories, but the attacks just keep coming.

After an outpouring of support from activists like you, President Obama and the Department of Health and Human Services announced in January …

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by Trina Scott, Senior Program Manager, Young Women of Color Empowerment at Advocates for Youth

National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day is a national HIV testing and treatment community mobilization initiative targeted at Blacks in the United States and the Diaspora. Watch the video below on how young people can get involved and protect themselves. We’ll also be tweeting facts and resources throughout the day via #NBHAAD — follow us and retweet!  

African Americans experience disproportionate rates of HIV and AIDS. In their lifetimes, 1 in 16 black men …

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By now many of you have heard about the decision of the Susan G. Komen Foundation to discontinue more than $600,000 in annual funding for cancer screenings and prevention services at Planned Parenthood. The decision was clearly political, motivated by pressure from the anti-choice movement to sever ties from Planned Parenthood. The Komen Foundation put politics above women’s health and we, as a movement, have responded. From Facebook posts, to constant Twitter updates to an outpouring of donations to Planned Parenthood for breast cancer screenings at local clinics, …

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EDITOR’S NOTE: Trust Women Week overlaps with the 39th anniversary of Roe v. Wade and reasserts our firm commitment to reclaiming the future of reproductive decision-making in 2012. Throughout the week, Amplify will be honoring women’s experiences and voices by featuring a different story from The 1 in 3 Campaign January 21-27.

As we close out our week of storytelling, Harriett talks about abortion access before Roe v. Wade and the terrible impact of income inequality on women’s ability to access safe abortion care. In October, Harriet was featured …

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EDITOR’S NOTE: Trust Women Week overlaps with the 39th anniversary of Roe v. Wade and reasserts our firm commitment to reclaiming the future of reproductive decision-making in 2012. Throughout the week, Amplify will be honoring women’s experiences and voices by featuring a different story from The 1 in 3 Campaign January 21-27.

1in3Campaign.org: Alex from Advocates for Youth on Vimeo.

VIDEO TRANSCRIPT

ALEX: I had my daughter and then nine months went past and I got pregnant again. And that was a big shock. And I wasn’t contemplating keeping