S.1070, Rivera / A.2705, Gottfried: In relation to establishing a sex education grant program

Published on May 22nd, 2017

Memorandum of Opposition

The above-referenced legislation would establish a new dedicated funding stream for comprehensive contraceptive sex education programs for all age levels in New York State.

The New York State Catholic Conference opposes this bill.

This legislation would create a new funding mechanism to direct taxpayer dollars toward select organizations such as Planned Parenthood to ensure “comprehensive” sex education programs, promoting all contraceptive methods at undefined “age appropriate” grade levels. These programs would be in schools and other settings.

Funding streams already exist in New York State which allocate millions of taxpayer dollars for contraceptive and sex education programs.

Moreover, the State Education Department already mandates health education and HIV/AIDS education in all schools, which is taught by existing instructional staff. Education in human sexuality is clearly covered by these statutory mandates. This legislation would encourage outside advocacy organizations, relying on state taxpayer dollars, to move into the classrooms to promote an extreme “comprehensive” contraceptive agenda. Parents want their children’s public school classes to focus on basic skills of reading, writing and arithmetic. We believe that parents do not want their children’s public school classes to be turned into preparatory courses on casual sexual intercourse, with encouragement to use birth control and experiment in sexual decision-making.

The rate of teenage sexual activity in our state is unacceptable. The legislature should resist creating new funding streams for programs which continue to fail the children and families of New York State.

For the above-noted reasons, the New York State Catholic Conference urges you to reject this legislation.

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