Press

Task Force denounces Congress' failure to halt heinous abstinence-only funding

Date: 
June 22, 2007

MEDIA CONTACT:
Roberta Sklar, Director of Communications
media@theTaskForce.org
646.358.1465

WASHINGTON, June 22 — The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, Inc., today expressed outrage at Congress’ continued failure to abolish abstinence-only funding. Earlier this week, the U.S. Senate approved a bill that reduces funding for the Bush-supported abstinence education programs by $28.5 million — the same figure the House increased abstinence-only funding by just days earlier.

Widely reported scientific studies, including a recent government-funded study, have unequivocally shown the ineffectiveness of abstinence-only programs. Since 1982, more than $1.5 billion in government funding has been given to abstinence-only programs, which have been proven ineffective and often contain religious doctrine, inaccurate medical information and harmful stereotypes about the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.

Statement by Matt Foreman, Executive Director
National Gay and Lesbian Task Force

“While we are gratified that the Senate slashed an additional $28 million allocation for abstinence-only education, the fact that Congress is allocating even one dollar to a thoroughly debunked and harmful program is an outrage. Who pays the price? Taxpayers, of course, but more importantly, every single adult and young person in America in need of factual, scientifically-based information to keep themselves healthy. They are the ones hurt most by Congress’ appalling disregard of reality on this issue. Abstinence-only programs are a sham and congressional Democrats can and must defund those programs now.”

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The mission of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force is to build the grassroots power of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community. We do this by training activists, equipping state and local organizations with the skills needed to organize broad-based campaigns to defeat anti-LGBT referenda and advance pro-LGBT legislation, and building the organizational capacity of our movement. Our Policy Institute, the movement’s premier think tank, provides research and policy analysis to support the struggle for complete equality and to counter right-wing lies. As part of a broader social justice movement, we work to create a nation that respects the diversity of human expression and identity and creates opportunity for all. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., we also have offices in New York City, Los Angeles, Miami, Minneapolis and Cambridge.