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-The Five Spot

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

let's talk about sex...

I’m always amused by the nation’s capital. I consider the District of Columbia the barometer of what is happening to poor black folks. I don’t have to hear what’s going on in the boroughs of NY, or the streets of Oakland. Nope, I get it straight from Chocolate City. If I want to know the state of education with poor black kids, the opportunities for poor black kids, the health of poor black kids…

So today, I found this out, “D.C. school officials are planning to offer tests for sexually transmitted diseases to all high school students in the coming school year, expanding a pilot program that uncovered a significant number of infected children. Washington Post

I think it’s great for the District of Columbia Public School (DCPS) system to offer testing to our young, poor, and disadvantaged youth. I’m even grateful that we don’t have a Republican Congress to contend with that would jeopardize the efficacy of the program as they did the needle exchange program, which exponentially increased the HIV/AIDS population. The program conducted last year at eight high schools found that 13 percent of about 3,000 students tested positive for an STD, mostly gonorrhea or chlamydia, according to the D.C. Department of Health.

“Half of the city's cases of chlamydia and gonorrhea are among adolescents… The program tells us that a lot of students in the public school system are engaging in unsafe sex."

In a 2007 study by the D.C. public school system, 60 percent of high school students and 30 percent of middle school students reported having had intercourse. Twenty percent of the high school students said they had had sex with four or more partners, and 12 percent of the middle school students said they had had three or more partners… The students are given paper bags containing urine collection cups and enter bathroom stalls. Once they get in the stalls, they can choose whether or not to provide urine samples. All the students return the paper bags, so other students do not necessarily know who did or did not provide a sample. Students provide a password and then call in a week later to get their result and treatment, if necessary. Whoever engineered the program at least considered the negative impact peer pressure could pose to students disclosing their acquiescence to testing.

"We have Third World statistics in terms of our HIV issues, and from the HIV perspective, we do need to find a way to identify students so that we can help them," Bellini couldn’t have stated it any better.

So, who loves our kids enough to talk about sex?


1 comment:

Rum Punch said...

This is good stuff right here. Because w/ the babies my organization is working with in Chocolate City we have middle school girls talking about deep throating and discussing other sexual exploits. And no one is talking to them about SEX. Y'all know I wanted to send Mama Rum Punch aka Nurse Keepin it Real into a meeting to break it down. But that would break all kinda rules. Le sigh.