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local Planned Parenthood reported on a recent conference in Nashville during which teachers and counselors, “… said they were less willing to use outside groups and more uncomfortable with sex education and more scared to answer questions.”
This fear is somewhat justified as the law imposes fines on outside groups that violate the new mandate (though teachers themselves are exempt).
Though the law has been the butt of many jokes, school systems are taking it seriously and proponents clearly see it as a victory. Valerie Huber of the National Abstinence Education Association says: “We have every hope that this will serve as a model for other states.”
New Poll: Adults Don’t Think Parental Consent Should be Waived for HPV Vaccine.
A new national poll by University of Michigan C.S. Mott Children’ Hospital found that while most adults believe that young people should be able to access medical care for Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) without parental consent, they do not feel the same way about the HPV vaccine.
Specifically, 57 percent of those surveyed believed that young people ages 12 to 17 should have access to medical care for prevention of STIs without parental consent and 55 percent believed that these young people should have access to medical care for the treatment of STIs, but only 45 percent supported similar access for the HPV vaccine. Those who did not support young people’s access without parental consent were asked why; 86 percent said simply they believed vaccines should be the choice of the parents, 43 percent said they had concern about the side effects, and 40 percent said they had moral or ethical concerns about the vaccine. These answers did not differ between those respondents who had kids and those who did not.
It’s actually heartening to see that in general adults think young people should have access to prevention and treatment of STDs without parental permission and the survey had other good news; 74 percent of adults surveyed agreed that getting the vaccine is a good way to protect adolescents from HPV. Still, they clearly see the vaccine differently than other prevention options, even though it is the best method for sexually active young people to prevent HPV which causes genital warts, cervical cancer, penile cancer, and cancers of the neck and throat. This may be a result of the CDC recommendation that young people receive the vaccine at 11 or 12—long before adults see them as sexual beings. It may also have a lot to do with the nature of vaccines most of which are given to infants and very young children, and therefore parental involvement is naturally assumed. The results may also have to do with the backlash against all vaccines that has been popular in the last decade or so. Anti-vaccine sentiment continues despite the fact that the original data which began the movement was found to.
religious community provides me with choice and options.
Across all contexts, participants were more closeted in environments they rated as controlling and judgmental. They kept their sexual orientation hidden the most in their religious communities (69 percent), schools (50 percent), and at work (45 percent) and were somewhat more open with their families (36 percent). Friends by far represented the most accepting group for most lesbian, gay, and bisexual individuals. All but 13 percent of participants had come out to their friends, and they reported feeling significantly less anger and greater self-esteem with friends than with any other group.
The study, which included participants from 18 to 65 years old, found that age made no difference in who comes out. Nor did gender or sexual orientation. Instead, the key determinant for revealing a minority sexual orientation was the supportiveness of the environment.
The vast majority of gay people are not out in every setting, says Ryan. People are reading their environment and determining whether it is safe or not.
Disclosing in some situations, but not in others, had no effect on mental health, suggesting that such selectivity may be neither helpful nor harmful, the authors concluded.
Other results from the study suggested that gay men experienced lower well-being across measures, while lesbians enjoyed the most autonomy support. Lesbians were the most out of the three groups, bisexuals the least.