Planned Parenthood urges McDonnell to accept federal money for sex education
Planned Parenthood Advocates of Virginia is urging Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) to apply for a federal grant to teach comprehensive sex education instead of abstinence-only education.
The group sent out an alert to supporters across the state last week and is encouraging them to contact McDonnell to ask him to apply for money for a program that would include information about disease and pregnancy prevention as well as abstinence. Already, 589 emails have been sent to the governor's office.
The program would "provide much-needed revenue to teach medically accurate, age-appropriate sex education programs,'' according to the alert sent to supporters.
The Obama administration recently made money available for the sex education program without requiring a state match. In previous years, the only money available was for the abstinence-only program that included a state match.
"Planned Parenthood urges Governor McDonnell to reject funding for the failed Title V abstinence only funding and instead apply for the new federal Personal Responsibility Education Program (PREP) funding that supports programs proven effective at helping young people make healthy decisions" said Jessica Honke, director of public policy at Planned Parenthood Advocates of Virginia. "Youth deserve accurate, complete information to help them postpone sexual activity and protect themselves when they become sexually active."
More than 20 states, including Virginia, had rejected abstinence-only funding in the past because of a state match requirement.
McDonnell spokeswoman Stacey Johnson said the state could choose to apply for both grants and that Department of Health officials are evaluating which, if any, of the grants the state will apply for this year. The deadline to apply is Aug. 30.
McDonnell has found himself on the opposite side of Planned Parenthood before. The organization, which serves 30,000 women in the state a year, endorsed his opponent, Democrat Creigh Deeds, in last year's election. It protested McDonnell's threats to defund the organization and opposed his proposal that limited funding for abortions.
August 17, 2010; 10:22 AM ET
Categories: Anita Kumar , Barack Obama , Creigh Deeds , Robert F. McDonnell
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