Pennsylvanians for Responsible Sex Education (PARSE), a coalition of different organizations, including the ACLU of PA, sponsored a lobby day in Harrisburg yesterday in support of two new bills. The day was a great success as over 100 constituents from all over the state came and met with their legislators to advocate for the bills.
The Healthy Youth Act and the Notice Home Act, are geared towards bettering sex education policy in Pennsylvania. The Healthy Youth Act, which is sponsored by Representative Chelsa Wagner, would require the teaching comprehensive sex education in all public and public charter schools in Pennsylvania. This version of sex education would still include and stress abstinence as the only one hundred percent way to avoid pregnancy or STI contraction, however, it would also provide scientifically accurate, age-appropriate information on forms of contraceptives. The Notice Home Act would require a notice to be sent home to parents in the event that their school teaches or is having an outside instructor come in to teach an abstinence-only program, giving them the opportunity to opt their child out of the instruction. This seems especially important to anyone who has seen the antics of many of these “abstinence educators” like Derek the Clown. This bill is sponsored by former teacher, Representative Ed Pashinski.
A rally was held in the rotunda of the capitol building in Harrisburg, featuring several speakers including Jordyn Bowen, a Union City High School student who is for comprehensive sex education. Fun was had and some positive change was hopefully made! Thanks to all of those involved!
Cassidy in Philadelphia