THE organisation Youth for Social Justice (YSJ) called on the Government of Trinidad and Tobago to implement sex education in schools as the world commemorated World AIDS Day 2013 recently.
The YSJ, which is the youth arm of the Movement for Social Justice (MSJ), also urged young people to exercise sexual responsibility by engaging in safer sexual practices, and advised that abstinence is the safest measure.
In a release from Ife Smith, executive youth representative of the MSJ, it stated: “The YSJ joins the rest of the country in commemorating World AIDS Day 2013. We applaud the young people who have dedicated their lives to fight this epidemic in Trinidad and Tobago through advocacy and volunteerism. We recognise the work of Ian Royer, Svenn Grant, members of the Youth Advocacy Movement, Trinidad Youth Council, Trinidad and Tobago branch of the Population Services International specifically their YouthAIDS programme, Ministry of Education Youth-Arm — Rapport, De Livin Room, etc”.
The release further stated: “We also remember all the persons who have lost their life to HIV and AIDS.
UNAIDS statistics have revealed that young people in the 15-35 age group are particularly vulnerable but policy makers continue to drag their feet on the issues of sexual and reproductive health (SRH) and young people’s SRH needs continue to go unrecognised and unmet. This is also evident in the rate of teenage pregnancy and the spread of other sexually transmitted infections. We call on the government to implement sex education in schools where young people can be given the tools to equip themselves. Education means empowerment and this will make a difference in many young lives”.