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Member Research and Reports

Member Research and Reports

Rutgers: Both Democrat and Republican Likely Voters Strongly Support Sex Education in Schools

Democrats and Republicans disagree on many policies but not on sex education for teenagers, according to a study led by Rutgers School of Public Health Chair of the Department of Urban-Global Public Health, Dr. Leslie M. Kantor.

The study, published in the journal Sex Education, surveyed close to 1,000 likely voters who identified as Democrats or Republicans. The findings show a strong majority of them support sex education within schools and the continued funding by the government for teenage pregnancy prevention programs that include information about both abstinence and contraception.

“Sex education remains a vital component to reducing unintended teenage pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases among young people as well as providing young people with the information and skills they need to build healthy relationships,” said Dr. Kantor. “Recent attempts by the government to shift funding away from evidence-based pregnancy prevention programs and back to abstinence-only-until- marriage-approaches are out of alignment with what likely voters want.”

The study found that Democrats and Republicans express similar support for including the issues of puberty and sexually transmitted diseases in school sex education programs and Republicans were more likely to also want abstinence included as a topic. Democrats are more likely than Republicans to want the topics of healthy relationships, birth control, consent and sexual orientation included in school sex education programs.  However, strong support exists for including all of the topics.

Read full report.

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