Abstinence-Only in Missouri

1 decade 6 months 3 weeks ago Thursday, May 24 2007 May 24, 2007 Thursday, May 24, 2007 2:18:58 PM CDT May 24, 2007 in News
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Both the Columbia Open Arms Crisis Pregnancy Center and Planned Parenthood of Missouri offer their own versions of sex education to schools, but planned parenthood is now prohibited from teaching anything but abstinence-only sex education in Missouri schools.

Proponents of such programs say Planned Parenthood has a hidden bias since they provide abortions.

"Abortions throughout America, is a multi-billion dollar business," said Nile Abele, executive director of Open Arms.

"[The abstinence program] gives a much wider range than just saying 'don't have sex.' It gives an understanding of how a woman's body works and what steps she can take to say no."

Both programs center around abstinence, but Planned Parenthood says there's more to the subject than just saying no.

"The reality is, over 50% of our teens are already engaging in sexual activity," said Michelle Trupiano, a lobbyist for planned parenthood. "So, just saying 'no' doesn't work and we have to make sure that our teens are armed with the tools they need.

Outside the classrooms, it's up to the parents to decide what knowledge they want their kids to have - whether it's the tools and options of planned parenthood or the morally centered knowledge of abstinence-only programs.

The two sides share one important point: the value of decisions.

"We talk about how to make good, healthy decisions," Trupiano said. 

"We want to empower her with information that's going to help her to make an informed decision," Abele said.

Planned Parenthood says it focuses on the reality of life and the new law only hides vital information from teens.

Governor Blunt must sign the bill before it becomes law.  If Blunt signs the bill, it would go into effect August 20, 2007.  For a look at the bill and websites of both Panned Parenthood and the Open Arms Crisis Pregnancy Center, visit the links on this page.

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