Ministry urges public to not have unprotected sex
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February 15, 2011

Ministry urges public to not have unprotected sex

While most persons receive gifts of chocolate, roses or jewelry on Valentine’s Day, the Family Planning Unit is deducing that some persons also receive little bundles of joy as a result of Valentine’s Day.{{more}}

Director of the Family Planning Unit at the Ministry of Health Naomi Prince stated that records have shown that more babies are being born each year as a result of unprotected sex on Valentine’s Day.

Prince spoke to SEARCHLIGHT at length on Monday, February 14, at the Unit’s safe sex health promotion, staged at the Ministerial Building.

She stated that records of previous years have shown that the trend was that the majority of babies born here were conceived during the Carnival period.

“There was a time that we saw it as a result of Carnival that we have the most babies. The trend is different now. It’s showing where people are having unprotected sex during Valentine’s,” she said.

Prince added that decisions made on Valentine’s Day were the main reason for having yesterday’s promotion. She stated that the promotion aims to sensitize persons on the importance of safe sex practices.

“It’s Valentine’s Day and we are aware that a number of persons are still having unprotected sex,” Prince stated.

Monday’s promotion saw a set up of three booths, where members of the National HIV/AIDS Secretariat and the Family Planning Unit distributed condoms, information packets and also conducted demonstrations of how condoms should be used. Information on other types of contraceptives was also provided.

Prince said that information for children was also available at a booth which sensitized persons about abstinence.

“We are not promoting sex for school children. We have been promoting abstinence, but as you are aware school children are having sexual intercourse. We are saying to them you can abstain and if you can’t abstain, for whatever reason, that you must be responsible, use a condom if you’re having sex,” she said.

Information on HIV/AIDS, how to treat HIV/AIDS victims, and female and male sexual and reproductive health was also made available to the public.

Prince related that the feedback received from the public was good. She said persons stopped to ask questions and collected information packets and condoms, which were available in different flavours. The most popular question that was asked, said Prince, was the use of the female condom. She added that this shows that the Ministry needs to give more information on the use of female condoms.

Prince, however, related that the Family Planning Unit is pleased with the figures for last year’s birth rates, as it was seen that it decreased from previous years.

“I looked at a ten-year period and I noticed that the lowest was last year,” Prince said adding that teenage births have also decreased.

She advised persons to practise safe sex to prevent Sexually Transmitted Infections and unwanted or unplanned pregnancies.