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Published on May 29th, 2014 | by Millennium Magazine Staff

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Senators Halt Health Education Bill Despite Bi-Partisan Support

COLUMBIA, S.C., May 28, 2014 – Senator Mike Fair (R-Greenville) placed a minority report on H. 3435- the Health Youth Amendment. The Senate Education Committee passed the bill with a 9-2 vote, with Senators Fair and Larry Grooms (R-Darlington) dissenting. With the legislative session ending next week, this makes passage of the bill even more difficult.

“It is upsetting that Senators Fair and Grooms have caved to pressure from groups that don’t support medically accurate information,” said Emma Davidson, Associate Director for Strategic Mobilization at Tell Them. “The Healthy Youth Amendment has been a bi-partisan effort since its original introduction, and passed the House with bi-partisan support. Today’s favorable report in the Education committee reaffirms that these reforms are necessary to the education of our young people.”

The Healthy Youth Amendment has received widespread support from organizations throughout the state, including the South Carolina Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy, the NAACP of Greenville, the National Coalition of STD Directors, the Urban League of the Upstate, the State Alliance for Adolescent Sexual Health, the South Carolina Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, and most recently, the South Carolina Public Health Association.

“As a businessman, I see how having a full education, including health education, can impact our state’s businesses and economic development,” said Robert Key, Senior Vice President at CCM Investment Advisors. “Having an educated and healthy workforce benefits our state’s economy. When an industry considers locating in a state, it looks not only at the education of the workforce but also the state’s health status. Healthier workers are more productive and it costs businesses less to provide health benefits.”

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About Tell Them

Tell Them is a non-profit, non-partisan coalition committed to creating a stronger, healthier South Carolina by preventing unintended pregnancies, HIV and sexually transmitted infections. Our 13,000 members advocate on behalf of mainstream positions that emphasize prevention, medical accuracy and science. For information, please visit tellthemsc.org. We are a program of the New Morning Foundation, the state’s leading voice on reproductive health policies. New Morning Foundation has been actively working on increasing access to emergency contraception in South Carolina since 2005.

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