WASHINGTON (BP)--The White House released a statement to Baptist Press following President Obama's proposal to eliminate federal funding for abstinence education in the 2010 budget.
The Obama administration should "make a priority of defunding most comprehensive sex education programs immediately because there is paltry research of effectiveness despite decades of funding."
-- Valerie Huber
"The president is deeply committed to reducing levels of teen pregnancy and believes that parents, families, communities and the government must come together to address this issue," the statement said. "The budget increases overall funding for teenage pregnancy prevention, which may include education on abstinence, and supports programs based on research.
"In the budget, 75 percent of funding in a new teenage pregnancy prevention program will be directed to programs that have demonstrated by rigorous research to prevent teen pregnancy," the statement continued. "The rest of the funds will be directed to promising, but not yet proven, programs for which we have some indication that they achieve the goal of teen pregnancy prevention. Those programs would have to agree to participate in a rigorous evaluation and abstinence-only programs could qualify."
Valerie Huber, executive director of the National Abstinence Education Association, wondered if the statement means the Obama administration supports abstinence education if there is proof of effectiveness.
"Similarly, are they saying that they do not approve comprehensive sex education if there is not compelling proof of effectiveness?" Huber told Baptist Press.
If the bottom line really is that the administration wants to fund what works and what has promise of working to curb teenage pregnancies and the spread of sexually transmitted diseases ... Read More