Posted on | February 8, 2012 by Lucia Muchova |
As part of the government effort to reduce teenage pregnancies, nine secondary schools in Southampton, Hants, were involved in a program providing contraceptive implants to girls as young as 13. Arm implants were often fitted without the parents’ knowledge. Many parents are outraged by the procedure. From the Telegraph article:
I agree that teaching teenagers about sexual health and contraception is very important but this is a step too far.
To perform a minor surgical procedure on school grounds, without parents knowing is morally wrong.
I cannot understand how this is allowed to happen.
I have spoken to a lot of parents at the school and they were horrified to find out this was happening.
As parents we want to protect our children and I feel that has been taken away from me.
The Labour MP for Southampton Test, Alan Whitehead, has been asked to investigate the matter.
Health authorities justify the procedure by pointing to a 22% reduction in teenage pregnancies in the region since 2001-2003. This reduction supposedly comes as a result of greater availability of sexual health services such as condom distribution, STD screening, pregnancy testing and provision of various contraceptive methods (including implants).
In reality, however, giving implants to girls, 13, without parents’ consent undermines the familial relationship based on trust, respect and responsibility. It leaves the parent completely out of an important sphere of a teenager’s life and decision-making. Moreover, it creates incentives for underage girls to have sex, undoubtedly encouraging promiscuity among teenagers.