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Vowing celibacy

The U.S. has become serious about abstinence-only education.

health and fitness Updated: Apr 14, 2004 17:27 IST

To obtain federal funds for abstinence-only education, organizations must use a curriculum that meets eight criteria. Under government definitions, a proper abstinence education program: (A) Has as its exclusive purpose teaching the social, psychological, and health gains to be realized by abstaining from sexual activity;

(B) Teaches abstinence from sexual activity outside marriage as the expected standard for all school age children; (C) Teaches that abstinence from sexual activity is the only certain way to avoid out-of-wedlock pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases, and other associated health problems;

(D) Teaches that a mutually faithful monogamous relationship in context of marriage is the expected standard of human sexual activity;

(E) Teaches that sexual activity outside of the context of marriage is likely to have harmful psychological and physical effects;

(F) Teaches that bearing children out-of-wedlock is likely to have harmful consequences for the child, the child's parents, and society;

(G) Teaches young people how to reject sexual advances and how alcohol and drug use increases vulnerability to sexual advances; (H) Teaches the importance of attaining self-sufficiency before engaging in sexual activity.

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Source: Department of Health and Human Services

First Published: Mar 15, 2004 15:31 IST