The Texas Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy believes that all people are deserving of respect and self determination regardless of race, ethnicity, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, age, pregnancy history, marital status, or disability.
We recognize the long and painful history of racism in the field of reproductive health, particularly against Black women, from slavery through the post-Civil Rights era. While some improvements to ensure equitable healthcare have been made, research shows that systemic racism in healthcare persists and contributes to adverse sexual and reproductive health outcomes for Black, Indigenous, and women of color.
We strongly support work to reduce health inequities across populations. Black and Latinx youth, youth in rural communities, teens with a history of poverty or trauma, youth who identify as LGBTQ+, and youth with experience in the child welfare system are more likely to experience barriers to information and healthcare that prevent unintended early pregnancy and other reproductive health disparities. To address these challenges, the Texas Campaign uses a lens of intersectionality to identify opportunities for sustainable change and develop impactful solutions.
Intersectionality is a framework to see the interactive effects of various forms of discrimination and disempowerment on a person, group of people, or social problem. It takes into account people’s overlapping identities and experiences in order to understand the complexity of prejudices they face. It looks at the way that racism, many times, interacts with patriarchy, heterosexism, classism, xenophobia — seeing that the overlapping vulnerabilities created by these systems actually create specific kinds of challenges.
The Texas Campaign:
● acknowledges that racism exists in all sectors as a systemic challenge and commits to being an anti-racist organization. We aim to incorporate anti-racist practices to promote health and wellbeing of all people of color throughout our partnerships, projects, collaborations, and operations.
● recognizes the unique challenges faced by those who identify as LGBTQ+, who may face trauma due to discrimination based on their sexual orientation or gender identity and experience higher rates of negative sexual and mental health outcomes than their peers.
● commits specifically to addressing discrimination against youth of color and LGBTQ+ youth. We commit to respecting and supporting youth of color and LGBTQ+ youth whose daily lives and experiences are adversely affected.
Empowering and Respecting Communities
The Texas Campaign:
● believes that all Texas teens deserve the information and resources they need to determine whether and when to start a family. We respect pregnant and parenting youth and honor the fact that teens can be loving and nurturing parents. We believe that teen parents should never be shamed and should be supported in completing their education, building a safe and healthy home for their families, and achieving their full potential in life. Given that Texas has one of the highest rates of repeat teen births in the nation, we believe that current teen parents should have access to the information and contraception needed to prevent unintended subsequent pregnancies.
● believes that communities, families, and cultural values play a key role in the health of youth. We support strengths based policies and programs to empower all youth with information and healthcare access and believe in honoring cultural backgrounds and personal values systems that shape decisions about relationships, childbearing, and healthcare choices.
● believes that optimal sexual health encompasses the shared responsibility of both partners and we advocate for respecting boundaries and for the concept of consent. We believe that in the context of romantic relationships and sexual activity, each partner is an equal decision maker, and should respect the other’s limits and the right to say “No.”
● commits to addressing inequities in the context of our mission, by specifically addressing racism, consent and respecting boundaries, families and cultural values, respecting teen parents, and the needs of LGBTQ+ to advance the sexual and reproductive health of the youth of Texas.
In fall 2020, the Texas Campaign board and staff worked to integrate anti-racist and nondiscrimination policies and practices into all aspects of our programs, operations, and professional relationships within and outside our organization. We are committed to continuing this effort with transparency and accountability, acknowledging that we may make mistakes along the way. We strive to continuously improve, be aware of shifts and developments in the reproductive health landscape, and reassess our strategies as needed based on the available data or evidence. We will work with our cross-sector partners statewide to ensure that all Texas youth experience positive, equitable access to sexual health information, resources and support.