For Immediate Release
December 16, 2015
Contact: Kristina Romines
Phone: (202) 265-2405 ext 333
SIECUS Applauds Hard-Won Protection of TPPP Funding and DASH increase in Omnibus Bill
The long-awaited negotiated fiscal year (FY) 2016 Omnibus funding bill released earlier this morning includes $101 million for the Office of Adolescent Health’s (OAH) Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program (TPPP) and $6.8 million for TPPP evaluation efforts. In addition, the bill also included $33.1 million for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Division of Adolescent and School Health (DASH), a $2 million increase over last year's funding level.
After months of pressure from adolescent sexual health promotion advocates and over 1,000 letters to members of congress pushing back against efforts to essentially eliminate TPPP, the level funding for TPPP and a slight increase for DASH is a hard-fought victory that shouldn’t have been necessary.
“It’s shocking that funding that supports community, school, and parent evidence-informed efforts to equip young people with information and skills about their health was under attack at all, but we’re thankful Congress listened to educators, parents, and young people from across the country to continue to support proven effective programs,” says Jesseca Boyer, Vice President for Policy, Interim President & CEO.
This funding did not come without a cost: Abstinence-only-until-marriage funding was doubled to $10 million.
“After 30 years and more than $1.8 billion wasted on the exclusive promotion of abstinence at the expense of all other education and skills to help young people lead healthy lives, it is extremely disappointing that Congress continues to throw limited resources into programs that at best, ignore the needs of young people, and at worst, stigmatize and shame them.”
SIECUS extends our gratitude to congressional leaders, national and state partners, and advocates across the country for their tireless efforts to protect the already limited federal sexual health education resources that support the sexual health of our nation’s young people and will continue to fight together to end funding for abstinence-only-until-marriage programs.
The Sexuality Information and Education Council of the U.S. (SIECUS) has served as the national voice for sexuality education, sexual health, and sexual rights for over 50 years. SIECUS affirms that sexuality is a fundamental part of being human, one that is worthy of dignity and respect. We advocate for the right of all people to accurate information, comprehensive education about sexuality, and sexual health services. SIECUS works to create a world that ensures social justice and sexual rights.