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Interfaith Group of Teens to Lobby for Comprehensive Sexuality Education

On March 21-24, 2009, an interfaith delegation of thirty-four teenagers and adults from around the country will meet in Washington, DC, to advocate for comprehensive sexuality education. The Sexuality Education Advocacy Training (SEAT) is co-sponsored by the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA), the United Church of Christ (UCC), the Union for Reform Judaism, the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice (RCRC), and Advocates for Youth. This year’s SEAT participants hail from thirteen states, including California, Connecticut, Florida, Indiana, Massachusetts, Maryland, Mississippi, New Mexico, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, Washington, and Wisconsin.

Participants will be meeting with their congressional representatives on Monday, March 23, 2009, to advocate for the passage of the Responsible Education About Life (REAL) Act. Introduced on March 17, 2009, by Sen. Frank Lautenberg, D-NJ and Rep. Barbara Lee, D-CA, the REAL Act would provide a dedicated federal funding stream of at least $50 million for comprehensive sexuality education.

SEAT organizers are optimistic about the prospects for increased funding for comprehensive sexuality education. “President Obama has made it clear that he plans on supporting programs that work and eliminating those that don’t,” said Adam Gerhardstein, acting director of the UUA Washington office. “Comprehensive sexuality education is far more effective than abstinence-only programming.”

UUA President Rev. William Sinkford, will deliver a sermon as part of the conference at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Arlington, VA, on Sunday, March 22nd. Rev. Sinkford will be preaching his sermon for both the 9:15 a.m. and 11:15 a.m. worship services.

“The 2009 REAL Act presents an historic opportunity to implement comprehensive sexuality education in public schools,” Rev. Sinkford said. “The UUA stands with other faith groups in advocating for non-discriminatory, age-appropriate programs that provide lifesaving information to young people.”

Media Opportunities:

  • Sunday, March 22, 11:15 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
    Worship at Unitarian Universalist Church of Arlington, 4444 Arlington Blvd, Arlington, Virginia 22204. UUA President, Rev. William Sinkford, leads service and delivers sermon on need for comprehensive sexuality education.
  • Sunday, March 22, 1:30 p.m. - 2:30 p.m.
    Post-worship panel on faith and sexuality at Unitarian Universalist Church of Arlington, featuring Rev. William Sinkford, Rev. Kelly Burd (United Church of Christ) and Rabbi Toby Manewith.
  • Monday, March 23, 9 - 10 a.m.
    Preparation for Lobby Day at the Methodist Building (100 Maryland Ave NE) (201 4th St. SE).
  • Monday, March 23, 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.
    SEAT participants conduct lobby visits.


Adam Gerhardstein
Acting Director, UUA Washington Office
washington [at] uua [dot] org
(513) 313-0073 (cell)
For information about SEAT or to schedule interviews with Rev. Sinkford and SEAT participants.

Orelia Busch
Legislative Assistant for Women’s Issues, UUA Washington Office
la_womensissues [at] uua [dot] org
(608) 445-6320 (cell)

The Unitarian Universalist Association is a faith community of more than 1,000 self-governing congregations that bring to the world a vision of religious freedom, tolerance and social justice. For more information about the UUA, please visit our online media kit.

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