Policy & Politics
Wisconsin Assembly Approves Measures on Sex Education and Abortions
March 14, 2012
The Assembly passed a bill early today that would require schools that teach sex education to encourage marriage and promote abstinence as the only trustworthy way to prevent STDs and pregnancy. Two Democrats joined all Republicans in the 60-34 vote in favor of the measure. Approved in a party-line Senate vote in November, the bill now advances to Gov. Scott Walker.
Under the current law, passed in 2010 when Democrats controlled the Legislature, sex education must be age-appropriate and comprehensive. Schools can choose not to provide sex education, and they must stress the benefits of abstinence, but they cannot offer abstinence-only curricula.
The new bill would repeal much of that law and allow abstinence-only courses to be taught. Courses would have to cover the socioeconomic benefits of marriage and discuss pregnancy, prenatal development, childbirth, and parental responsibility. Birth control is not listed among other various topics recommended for inclusion, though schools could choose to teach it.
On Tuesday, the Assembly passed a bill that would limit insurance offered in Wisconsin under the federal health care law from covering some abortions. The Senate approved the measure in October, so it also proceeds to the governor.
Thursday is the last day of the legislative session.
03.14.2012; Jason Stein, Patrick Marley
This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.
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