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Introduced by Rep. Erin Maye Quade (DFL-Apple Valley) and Sen. Kari Dziedzic (DFL-Minnesota), HF 4207 / SF 3911 would require that district and charter schools develop and implement a consent program for grades 8-12 to prevent and reduce incidences of sexual assault. 

Specifically, the bill also requires that districts hold in-service training for appropriate district staff and school board members and collaboration with local community health services or organizations that have consent programs.

This common-sense proposal allows schools to integrate information about consent, personal responsibility, and healthy relationships into existing health programs.

As the largest sex-educator in Minnesota, Planned Parenthood knows that teaching young people about healthy behaviors and relationships is key to preventing sexual assault with knowledge. We must equip our young people to make the best decisions for their lives and their futures.

Young people need to know how to recognize what sexual violence and harassment looks like, how to stop it from happening, and how to avoid becoming perpetrators. Consent education as part of a broader health curriculum is a natural fit for teaching these lessons.

Sexual violence and assault is a problem in Minnesota and lawmakers have a chance to do something about it.

The bill did not receive a hearing in either the House or Senate and therefore did not meet deadline.

A revised version of this bill will be offered as an amendment to the Education Omnibus Finance bill. The amendment states that school districts may include age-appropriate instruction on consent into existing health standards and includes a definition of consent.

A vote against this proposal is a vote to withhold vital information from young people.

We need legislators who support arming students with the full range of information necessary – including information about consent, healthy relationships, decision making and personal responsibility.

NOTE: HF 4207 and SF 3911 are not technically companion bills, although their language appears to be identical.

Tags: minnesota

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Planned Parenthood Can Help Drive a Culture of Consent in the Wake of the #MeToo Movement

Planned Parenthood is the largest source of sex education across our region, reaching more than 40,000 adults and young people. Highly trained sex educators are invited in to public and private schools, community centers, scout troops, churches, health clinics and more teach a variety of topics. In order to prevent sexual violence, young people need access to sex education that includes consent and healthy relationships, starting well before college and well before they become sexually active.

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