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Working with young people - towards an agenda for sexual health

By Peter Aggleton and Catherine Campbell


In this paper we outline key elements of a human rights-based framework for sexual health promotion that takes account of young people's needs and interests. This framework is located against the backdrop of a critique of the way in which negative definitions of 'sexual health' and of 'adolescence', as well as restrictions on open and appropriate sex education in schools, undermine the likelihood that young people will achieve optimal benefit from existing services and strategies in countries such as England and Scotland. Central to our analysis is an affirming and positive definition of sexual health-that focuses on the attainment of sexual pleasure and which links sexuality to an expression of individual and collective needs and broader human rights and responsibilities. We point to ways in which such a framework might inform the provision of appropriate information about positive sexual health, and of more accessible and integrated sexual health services. We also highlight the need for measures to improve young people's confidence and aspirations, and to increase youth participation in decision making in matters relating not only to their sexual health, but also to the wider social and community environments within which young people's sexuality is negotiated

Topics: HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare. Criminology
Publisher: Routledge
Year: 2000
DOI identifier: 10.1080/14681990050109863
OAI identifier:
Provided by: LSE Research Online
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