December 3, 2009

Tales Inside School: Condoms Cause AIDS

Australia: It seems an unofficial front for the Catholic Church's contraception disinformation campaign has been sleazing its way through regional New South Wales state school spreading its propaganda about condoms being ineffective in preventing HIV and other sexually transmitted infections.

Real Choices Australia operates the program, Choices Decisions Outcomes, mainly in government schools across Australia. One of its directors and spokeswoman, Debbie Garratt, has links to the Catholic Church and has worked with anti-abortion groups.

The program is used at Ulladulla High School. Teams are trying to promote it in the Newcastle, Kempsey, Macksville, Port Macquarie and Taree regions. On the Choices Decisions Outcomes' website, students are warned that condoms are not 100 per cent effective in stopping sexually transmitted infections. It highlights that children who engage in sexual activity are flirting with danger.The website goes on to say there is no scientific evidence that condoms prevent the transmission of most sexually transmitted diseases.

Amusingly enough, CathNews pimps the Real Choices Australia web site as ensuring that women and men have access to accurate information, with the former receiving the support they require to make an informed choice, when pregnant which is all a complete load of bollocks. Your only choice on that site will be church doctrine, which consists entirely of deceptive information and outright lies.

The Greens are not happy.

The NSW Greens MP John Kaye said the program compromised the State Government's public health strategy, which says the use of condoms during casual sexual encounters significantly reduced STI transmissions.

The program is using subterfuge to infiltrate the classroom and indoctrinate young people with a minority viewpoint, putting their sexual health at risk, Dr Kaye said.

Neither ACON nor Family Planning NSW are pleased with their propaganda either.

Nicholas Parkhill, the chief executive of ACON, formerly the AIDS Council of NSW, said questioning the effectiveness of condoms put the lives of young people at risk.

It is very concerning to learn that groups are questioning the effectiveness of condoms in relation to the prevention of HIV and other STIs, Mr Parkhill said.

Ellie Freedman, medical education co-ordinator of Family Planning NSW, said scientific evidence existed that condoms prevented the transmission of most STIs. She said laboratory studies showed latex is impermeable to STIs.

At Family Planning NSW we advise that consistent condom use is the most effective way of protecting against STIs, Dr Freedman said.

Looks like it's a loophole that saw these lowlifes get in through the back door. They don't need departmental permission, which seems strange considering the topic, they just need a word in the ear of a friendly, if dim, principal.

A spokesman for the Department of Education and Training said Real Choice Australia did not require departmental authorisation for its presentations, only approval from principals.

Hopefully, outing the bastards will see them booted before their lies result in increased HIV and STI statistics and even more teen pregnancies.

Today's lesson: condoms in the classroom cause controversySydney Morning Herald, 3rd December 2009.

Debbie Garratt and Real Choices, 25th January 2009.


Nice timing, given the change of opposition leader - this is the sort of thing Abbott is right behind supporting, and why I hope he lasts about as long as the summer break for parliament.


The secondary school’s program, Choices Decisions Outcomes has been the subject of unsubstantiated criticism and misrepresentation over the past few weeks, primarily coming from members of the Greens Party.

The Choices Decisions Outcomes relationship program has been offered nationally for more than a decade to many thousands of students in years 7-10. It is a program which offers students the opportunity to consider the qualities they value in other people, as well as themselves, and invites them to consider the kinds of relationships that are important to them at different ages. It also encourages them to consider these things in light of their developing sexuality and provides activities which enable them to consider all the potential outcomes of their decision making.

Recent media reports have highlighted with concern the high numbers of teenagers seeking abortion in Victoria alone in 2008. Further reports state that large numbers of these young girls are experiencing unwanted or coerced sexual contact and that they do not have the skills necessary to negotiate undesired premature sexual activity. Teenagers without all the facts are not making informed decisions. Teenagers without strategies for resisting pressure to engage sexually before they are ready are not making choices. Our program addresses these issues, and encourages the support and resourcing of adolescents with information and strategies for making healthy choices.

The information given is consistent with all currently accepted evidence, including that supported by the World Health Organisation.

Our organisation, Real Choices Australia, has no religious or political affiliations. As Executive Director of Real Choices Australia, I have made the position of CDO and our organisation clear. I have also repeatedly requested that those continuing to undermine the program by misrepresenting it to contact me to get the facts straight. All my requests have been ignored.


I see the figurehead of this Catholic propaganda wing has fronted up to screech that she's not really a figurehead for Catholic propaganda, despite evidence to the contrary. I suspect she's trying to weasel around this because her group is "not an official part of the Catholic Church" even though the Catholic Diocese of Wagga Wagga claim her as a minion.

Seems Debbie either has trouble with dates ("offered nationally for more than a decade") or, more likely, her group bought up the name of a previously legitmate organisation as a front. How can it have been running for more than a decade when Debbie's little front company kicked off in 2008?

As for her attempt to look valid with the mindnumbingly stupid "high numbers of teenagers seeking abortion", how about we throw Debbie's super fundie illogic back her and claim that the Catholic church's insistence on providing misleading, inaccurate and incorrect information on contraception and human sexuality is directly responsible for those pregnancies/abortions.


Shouldn't that have read:
Your only choice on that site will be church doctrine, which consists entirely of deceptive information and outright lies.


Thanks for the catch. You are, of course, correct and it has been edited.

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This page contains a single entry by Red Wolf published on December 3, 2009 2:11 AM.

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