Sunday, March 25, 2012

Health Education Needs Your Support!


There are several bills that need your support to assure they are enacted into law, and that are critical to the health of our children and community:

House Bill 3027 - The Sexual Health Education Bill
This bill aims to modernize Illinois’ sex education law and create a standard for existing sexual health education courses for students in grades 6-12. This education empowers teens with the best prevention tools. Sexual health curricula must be updated and based on the latest scientific information.  HB 3027 would require existing sex ed programs to teach complete, medically accurate, and developmentally and age-appropriate content.

The bill gives school districts the flexibility to choose among numerous eligible curricula, and curricula are required to stress abstinence as the only 100% ensured method of avoiding unintended pregnancy, STDs and HIV/AIDS, but also teach about contraceptive options as a means of prevention. Parents can opt to remove their children from any sex ed class for any reason.

Click Here to sign a petition in support of this bill.

Real Education of Healthy Youth Act of 2011
This is a federal bill that would end funding of the "Abstinence until Marriage" program and redirect the funding to the Personal Responsibility Education Program (PREP), a state grant funding stream. Currently the government is spending $50M a year on this program even though the 10-year study of the program indicated it had no impact on teen behavior. In contrast, PREP has been scientifically evaluated to have a measurable impact.

Click Here to  address a message to your representation in Washington and encourage the support this legislation.

Illinois is Planning to Cut HIV Prevention Funding by 50%!

Governor Pat Quinn and the General Assembly are considering cutting state funding for HIV programs by $4 million, which will a lower state funding for HIV prevention, housing, corrections, minority health, perinatal HIV, and harm reduction programs by 50%.

Based on public health data, 108 additional people could become infected with HIV, resulting in over $40 million in lifetime medical costs. Nearly 1,000 HIV-positive persons would lose access to housing and vital supportive services. We estimate that this reduction will actually increase costs to Illinois by $6.9 million next fiscal year.

Click Here to make your voice heard and contact your elected officials now!

Repeal HIV Discrimination Act

Criminal transmission of HIV laws demonize people with HIV and increase stigma.  When someone is charged with criminal transmission of HIV, their HIV-positive status is disclosed to the community, and often the world, through demonizing press coverage.  Severe sentences perpetuate misconceptions that people with HIV are highly infectious, toxic, and dangerous. Criminal transmission of HIV laws can lead individuals to avoid HIV testing and treatment because they fear being tarred with the same brush.

The REPEAL HIV Discrimination Act (HR 3053) would require the U.S. Attorney General and the Secretary of Health and Human Services to update guidelines and assist states in changing discriminatory criminalization policies against people living with HIV/AIDS.  Please tell your Congressional representative to co-sponsor this critical piece of legislation.

Click Hear to send a message to your legislative representative.

Thank you for taking a stand on health education and non-discriminatory practices.

Trinity UCC
HIV/AIDS Ministry

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