Local Group Unhappy with State-funded Teen Website

April 28, 2011
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A state taxpayer-funded website that deals with teen sexual issues – including how to obtain an abortion – has one Revere group a little shocked.

The site, called ‘Maria Talks,’ became news last week when the Boston media reported that the site – funded by the state Department of Public Health and produced by the Aids Action Committee – used cartoonish characters that downplayed abortion and became a bit too graphic in their descriptions. The characters also instruct teens on how to obtain an abortion without their parents’ consent.

It has sparked quite a storm in Boston and some groups are calling for the project to lose its funding.

In Revere, the Our Teens, Our Schools advocacy group is sounding off on its disapproval of the site.

So far, while materials advertising the site were available to schools, it doesn’t appear as if any materials advertising the site were at Revere Public Schools.

“It’s appalling really,” said Kathy Magno of Our Teens, Our Schools. “It’s just sending a message to kids that abortion is just  easy stuff and we’re here to help you and you don’t have to tell your parents. They even give them some cartoony characters to speak to them…The information they give is actually inaccurate when they say abortion is no big deal and that there are no real side effects.”

Magno said that she hopes to inquire with the new RevereCARES Sexual Health Task Force about the website – to see if that is a direction the group plans on heading towards.

“It begs the question about Revere’s task force and where Revere’s task force is planning on going,” said Magno. “Are they planning on going towards something as absurd as ‘Maria Talks?’ Is that the direction that they are also headed?”

She said that she hopes the ‘Maria Talks’ campaign is quickly ended.

“It’s just so bold and outrageous and far-reaching,” said Magno. “I can’t imagine any parent going onto that website and thinking it’s okay.”

 

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