The following comes from a May 7 email from Pacific Justice Institute:

Sacramento, CA—Parents in California are questioning why legislation making its way through the California Assembly would force schools to put a positive spin on the HIV and AIDS epidemics.

AB 329, by Assemblywoman Weber, would make a number of changes to sex education, including de-emphasizing the role of parents and the importance of marriage while no longer giving school districts a choice whether to teach sex ed.

But the provision getting the most attention is a mandate that schools de-emphasize the devastating effects of HIV and AIDS.

Section 7 of The bill would require schools to teach:
“Information about the treatment of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections, including how antiretroviral therapy can dramatically prolong the lives of many people living with HIV and reduce the likelihood of transmitting HIV to others.

“Discussion about social views on HIV and AIDS, including addressing unfounded stereotypes and myths regarding HIV and AIDS and people living with HIV. This instruction shall emphasize that successfully treated HIV-positive individuals have a normal life expectancy, all people are at some risk of contracting HIV, and the only way to know if one is HIV positive is to get tested.”

AB 329 sailed through the Assembly Education Committee on a 6-1 vote on April 22. It is currently in the Appropriations Committee, where it is expected to pass. Concerned citizens should call their elected Assembly member to request their vote against AB 329.

Brad Dacus, president of Pacific Justice Institute, commented, “Just when we thought it couldn’t get much worse, California lawmakers are coming up with new ways to push parents aside and lead students down risky paths. We absolutely must extend compassion toward those suffering from HIV and AIDS. At the same time, we absolutely cannot afford to send our kids mixed messages about the dangers of these deadly diseases.”