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Letter: Utah desperately wants higher intercourse ed curriculum

In the Deseret News article, “Utah Legislators Do Not Need Consent As Part of Sex Education,” published February 8, Marjorie Cortez stated that the House Education Committee voted 4-7 against HB177.

HB177 would have added instructions on consent, coercion, sexual violence deterrence, and sexual assault mitigation to the Utah sex education curriculum.

Consent – and the lack of education related to consent – is a huge problem in Utah and undoubtedly affects your children. Crime statistics collected and reported by the Federal Bureau of Investigation show that Utah has the eleventh highest rate of rape and sexual assault in the nation. Rape is the only violent crime statistic in Utah that is consistently above the national average.

Cortez cited the victim’s attorney, Alan Buys, who worked with students who “did sexual things without consent and had no clue”. This clearly indicates a widespread educational problem. If adolescents do not have an adequate understanding of consent, how can they be expected to avoid non-consensual encounters?

You can not.

I urge you to contact your local representatives to explain your support for HB177, and I urge you to teach your own children the nuances of consent.

Carlie Lythgoe