Sex Education and Emergency Contraception

The Secular Medical Forum considers that it is vital for children and young adults to be given adequate preparatory information to enable them to engage in safe sexual relationships. This sex education must explore the wide diversity of human relationships and must give correct information about sexual health, responsibility and choice.

Unfortunately, certain influential religious bodies oppose meaningful sex education in our schools.

Some religious attitudes lead to a limited discussion about within-marriage, heterosexual sex only. This leads to suppression of open discussion and a failure to understand other sexual orientations and practices to the detriment of many individuals.

Emergency contraception is sometimes difficult to obtain. Some pharmacists refuse to sell it or even to dispense a prescription given to a woman after a consultation with her own doctor. The difficulties are more pronounced in rural communities which are traditionally more religious. The Forum deeply regrets that these pharmacists are invoking “conscientious” reasons for denying help to women who urgently need their professional cooperation if unwanted pregnancies are to be avoided.