15 November 2018

Parents encouraged to have 'the talk' with School Leavers

The Department of Health is once again encouraging parents to help their teenagers make safe choices at Leavers Week by talking to them about sex and relationships.

Sexual Health and Blood-borne Virus Program Manager Lisa Bastian said that talking to teenagers about sex could help them feel prepared, and less likely to make risky decisions in the spur of the moment.

“Research tells us that kids whose parents talk with them about sex and relationships often have sex at an older age, and make safer choices, than kids who are left to find out for themselves,” she said.

“While young people become more influenced by their peer group as they get older, family beliefs and values form an important part of how they identify themselves.”

Ms Bastian said when people had unplanned sex, they were less likely to use condoms, which could result in unplanned pregnancies and sexually transmitted infections.

“It’s important to give advice and offer support, while also showing confidence that teenagers can weigh up different points of view and make good decisions about their own health,” she said.

The Department will be partnering with the WA AIDS Council to promote a competition to win a two-day double pass to Falls Festival, via the ‘Leavers Level Up’ event in Dunsborough on Tuesday, 20 November from 11am to 3pm.

Leavers also have a chance to win VIP tickets by completing a safe sex quiz at couldihaveit.com.au

The promotion coincides with the launch of the Department’s new Youth STI campaign, consisting of a video promoting STI testing, which will be shown in cinemas and on digital platforms over summer.

The Department will also coordinate the medical zone at the Dunsborough Leavers Zone for the 11th year in a row.

The medical zone, which runs for four nights from Monday 19 – Thursday 22 November, traditionally treats up to 700 young people during the week for a variety of reasons, reducing the impact of the event on local health facilities.

ENDS

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