D.C. condom program sending wrong message, says abstinence group

Written by: Nairita Das
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Washington, Nov 19 (ANI): The "Rubber Revolution" campaign launched by the District of Columbia Department of Health has been seen as sending the wrong message by an abstinence group.

The campaign, which will target all D.C. residents for the next year, features a five-question condom quiz.

But the executive director of the National Abstinence Education Association has said that it send a message that promiscuity is OK as long as you're protected.

"It definitely minimizes any risks associated with casual sex and it sends the message that having sex with any number of partners at any time is OK as long as you use a condom," Fox News quoted NAEA's Valerie Huber as saying.

"It's a not-too-subtle message," she stated.

Huber said she found "nothing that informs" during a brief review of RubberRevolutionDC.com, which features a guide on how to properly wear condoms and a five-question quiz that lets users determine what kind of condom suits their personality.

Huber said she found the campaign particularly troubling since the District of Columbia denied federal funding for abstinence education earlier this year.

But Michael Kharfen, the Health Department's community outreach bureau chief, defended the website and its pop quiz as a way to "engage people in a different way" when it comes to condom usage.

"We've looked at ways people have done strategies to engage people in an affirming way," Kharfen said.

"Some of what we've seen in research is that condoms can be stigmatising. We're trying to change the conversation.

"We're not recruiting people into sexual activity. What we're saying is if you're engaging in sexual activity, a condom is the only device that protects you from these diseases and unwanted pregnancy," he stated. (ANI)

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