Feds Shirk Abstinence Funding

Special Report - April 19, 2012

An analysis of federal sex education funding reveals an “unprecedented funding disparity” between abstinence education programs and contraceptive-based sex education programs in the United States. The analysis, which was conducted by the National Abstinence Education Association (NAEA), shows that President Obama’s proposed budget for fiscal year 2013 would allocate only $1 toward abstinence education programs for every $24 the government would spend towards contraceptive-based sex education programs. The NAEA describes the government’s funding of sex education as “a historic departure in federal health prevention policy.”

According to the report:

  • In 2008, 25 percent of federal funding went to abstinence education, resulting in a funding ratio between abstinence education and non-abstinence education of 1 to 4.
  • By 2012, the funding disparity between abstinence education and contraceptive-based education increased to 1:16, with $55 million spent on abstinence-education, versus $512 million spent on pregnancy and STD prevention programs based on a contraceptive approach, and $390 million spent on family planning services.
  • From fiscal year 2007 to 2012, the government spent $4.9 billion on contraceptive-based sex education programs versus only $675.9 million on abstinence-centered education programs.
  • The president’s proposed budget for fiscal year 2013 would devote only four percent of federal sex education funding to abstinence education programs, or a total of $37.0 million, resulting in a funding disparity of 1:24.

The NAEA is urging Congress to “correct the current disparity” in sex education funding by passing the Abstinence Education Reallocation Act (HR 2874/S 2185), which has been introduced in both the U.S. House and Senate. The legislation would “award grants on a competitive basis to public and private entities to provide qualified [abstinence-centered] sexual risk avoidance education to youth and their parents.” Specifically, it would award $110 million for abstinence education programs that teach sexual risk avoidance “for each of fiscal years 2012 through 2016.”

The bill has 67 cosponsors in the House, including North Carolina Representatives Renee Elmers (NC–2) and Walter Jones (NC–3), and one cosponsor in the Senate.

Related resources:
Federal Abstinence Funds Restored - January 10, 2012
More Teens Delaying Sex - November 23, 2011
Abstinence Increasing Among Teens - March 8, 2011
NC Requests Abstinence Funds - September 27, 2010
Parents Strongly Favor Abstinence - August 25, 2010
Abstinence Funding Returns - May 28, 2010
Some Abstinence Funding Restored - March 30, 2010
Abstinence Programs Prove Effective - March 3, 2010
2010 Budget Removes Abstinence Funding - July 31, 2009
Ten Reasons to Keep Abstinence Education in NC - FNC - Jul/Aug, 2008
Title V Abstinence Funding Expires - July 1, 2009

Copyright © 2012. North Carolina Family Policy Council. All rights reserved.

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