The scientific evidence – not to mention common sense – shows that comprehensive sex education helps young people withstand pressures and promotes healthy, responsible and mutually protective relationships.
But a dangerous new legislative proposal (Senate Bill 410) would create an additional barrier to giving young people the access to education they need and decrease the number of young people in Florida receiving sex ed at a critical point in their lives.
Florida already has uneven access to sex education. Counties with large metropolitan areas, like Miami-Dade and Hillsborough, tend to have better standards that promote comprehensive sexual health education, while students in more rural areas are sometimes left with abstinence only education. Senator Rodriguez’s new bill, SB 410, would cause even greater divides in access to sex education.
Providing teens and young people with the information they need to make responsible decisions about their sexual health is extremely popular with everyone from parents to public health experts because it reduces unintended teen pregnancies and sexually transmitted infections.
We all want to keep children safe but research clearly shows that stigmatizing and limiting access to sex education will have the opposite effect. It is imperative for the health of our young people that we provide our students with comprehensive, medically accurate and age-appropriate information.