In cities with high populations of people living with STDs, sexual health education is not only important, it is essential. While some might believe that STDs are rare, they are mistaken. Over 80% of new diagnosis of AIDS can be attributed to Hispanics and African-Americans. Black males are three times more likely to be living with HIV/AIDS. The only groups that have higher infection rates are gay or bisexual men and drug users.
While some young people are less intimidated by the possibility of dying from AIDS, public health officials are concerned with the decline in regular condom use. In order to help stop the epidemic from spreading, funding for HIV/STD prevention has increased. This STD prevention extends to testing for most common STD’s like herpes. There is an expansion of health clinic hours’ worth upwards of $23 million dollars. The Department of Health and community-based organizations receive over $13,000,000 in federal funds to create and maintain abstinence-only sexual education.
The borough requires health education for students in kindergarten through the twelfth grade. It is mandatory for any student in any of the boroughs, to receive sex education in their public schools.
There has also been an abundance of legislation enacted with reference to sexual health. For example, Senate Bill 6205 requires all public schools to establish a comprehensive, medically accurate, and age-appropriate sex education program. Assembly Bill 5810 requires that girls entering the sixth grade be given the HPV vaccination. The Assembly Bill 2856 and the Senate Bill 1342 were intended to provide age-appropriate sexuality education grant programs that facilitated grants to eligible applicants to support age-appropriate sex education.
What we do with our sexual health is an important topic, but it is also important to know who is contributing to a cities STD rates and why. The demographics of this city are extremely diverse. It is the second-largest borough with a population of over 2.3 million residents reported in 2013. Almost half of those two million people are foreign-born. This city is densely populated, the fourth most populated in New York.
In 2009, The American Community Survey reported that the population was divided as follows: 46.1% White, 30.2% Non-Hispanic Whites, 18.8% Blacks, 17.6% Non-Hispanic Blacks, 0.5% Native American, 22% Asian, and 2.4% Multiracial, and 26.9% Hispanic. By far, the largest demographic groups are White and Hispanic.
As of 2000, it was home to over 780,000 households and is comprised of over 530,000 families. Of these families, many did not receive a college diploma. This lack of education and self-responsibility usually exacerbates the STD epidemic that is being experienced. Due to the high amount of drug-using individuals, STDs can be a huge risk and worry since it is very difficult to admit you may need help. However, seeking help with STD testing and practicing safe sex is well worth the potential difficulties.
Diversity is the first word you think of when this borough is discussed. The fact that it is becoming more multiracial each day shows you how much the diverse populations are becoming one. This means there are more individuals are engaging in sexual situations with people of different backgrounds. Over 50,000 multiracial people currently live in Queens.
Getting an STD test is a great way to make sure you are healthy. Every six months is the general recommendation, more though, if one has a number of sexual partners or if any symptoms are noted. The amount of money spent on sexual education is just the beginning of a solution to a bigger problem. Due to the sensitive nature of STD results, STD clinics all over the city offer private STD testing and counseling services. Being responsible for your health and doing your part is an important part of being a citizen.