Monday, May 11, 2009

President's Budget More Mixed Than I Thought

I am still doing a happy dance about the President eliminating all three abstinence only until marriage funding streams last week.

But it turns out that the budget as a whole is a little more mixed for reproductive justice. Here's what the Guttmacher Institute has to say:

On May 7, President Obama sent Congress his proposed 2010 budget recommendations. For programs and policies relating to sexual and reproductive health at home and abroad, the proposed budget contains some good news, some bad news and some news that is only okay. The most welcome development is the abolition of “abstinence-only-until-marriage” programs. The most disappointing is the failure of leadership the president displayed by sanctioning the continuation of federal bans on subsidized abortion services for U.S. women who depend on the federal government for their health care or health insurance.

You can read their analysis at

And it's going to be important to help both the Obama administration and the Congress understand that the new "teen pregnancy prevention" initiative needs to be broadened to "comprehensive sexuality education" so in helps young people avoid STI's not just pregnancy -- and so it is inclusive of gay and lesbian and questioning teens who may not be at risk of pregnancy yet still information and services. We need to help all young people make ethical decisions about their sexuality, including postponing their involvement in mature sexual behaviors of any kind.

So, it's not a perfect report card for the President from the SRH community. But, goodness, it is SO MUCH better than we've seen in a long time that I'm still encouraged.

Now, Mr. President, can you do something that demonstrates your support for the LGBT community?

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