Position Statement

Healthy Teen Network  develops position statements on relevant issues for  youth as a way to make clear to our varied audiences what we stand for and as a resource to support our and your program development and public policy advocacy efforts.

We encourage you to adopt and adapt these position statements to suit your needs!




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Position Statement: Substance Abuse and Its Intersection with Sexual Behavior among Youth

December 3, 2018

Healthy Teen Network understands that the teen years are a time of experimentation and risk taking and that this is normative behavior (Chick and Reyna, 2012). However some risk-taking behaviors can lead to highly morbid and even fatal outcomes and thus require prevention, early detection, and prompt treatment. Substance abuse and sexual risk-taking behaviors are…

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Position Statement: Evidence and Innovation

November 15, 2018

Healthy Teen Network believes that organizations and individuals that deliver client-focused programs and services should use evidence-based interventions and approaches, when they are available and appropriate to the people being supported. Healthy Teen Network also believes that innovation is critical to addressing the holistic needs of all youth and to keeping interventions and approaches relevant…

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Position Statement: Youth Engagement


Healthy Teen Network believes that authentic youth engagement, an approach we call youth at the center, is vital for achieving positive health and well-being outcomes for all youth. Organizations that deliver sexuality education and sexual and reproductive health services should integrate youth engagement in their design, development, and delivery of opportunities, supports, and services. Professionals…

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Position Statement: Homelessness & Its Intersection with Sexual Behavior among Youth

February 5, 2018

Healthy Teen Network maintains that housing is a universal human right, and by extension, a right all. Americans should enjoy equitably. Furthermore, we recognize the centrality of safe and stable housing to achieving whole health. Accordingly, we support policies, programs, and practices to ensure permanent, safe, and affordable housing for all as a matter of…

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Position Statement: Ensuring Equity for Youth by Affirming Young People Who Are Pregnant or Parenting

January 22, 2018

A more just and equitable world supports and empowers all adolescents and young adults—including young people who are pregnant or parenting—to lead healthy and fulfilling lives. All young people deserve respect, appreciation, and acceptance for their individual strengths, talents, and potential. And all adolescents and young adults have a right to comprehensive, developmentally and culturally…

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Position Statement: Ensuring Equity for Youth by Applying Gender Transformative Approaches

October 19, 2017

Healthy Teen Network believes that organizations that deliver sexuality education and sexual and reproductive health services should apply gender transformative approaches to their service delivery. When so doing, professionals who provide sexuality education, clinical, and supportive services to youth should be cognizant of the environment and social norms within which the youth reside and remain…

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Position Statement: Ensuring Equity by Dismantling Racism


Healthy Teen Network believes that racism remains a persistent social toxin within United States society. Further, we believe that the ongoing and disparate impacts that racism has on public health at large warrants additional and sustained attention. While we recognize that race is a social construct with no biological basis, the material impact of racial…

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Position Statement: Ensuring Equity for Youth by Affirming Those Who Are LGBTQ+ or Gender Non-Conforming

October 6, 2017

Healthy Teen Network believes youth who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, questioning, and queer (LGBTQ+), youth falling outside of the cisgender, heterosexual norm, and gender non-conforming youth should be affirmed as equal members of society and communities, deserving education and care relevant to their lived experiences. Healthy Teen Network shares position statements on relevant issues…

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Position Statement: Universal Right to Health Care

October 5, 2017

Universal Healthcare Position Statement Cover

Healthy Teen Network maintains that health care is a universal human right, and by extension, a right all Americans should enjoy equitably. In the United States, the universal right to health care must be accomplished by ensuring that each American 1) can enter the nation’s healthcare system without any barrier of discrimination or other impediment…

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Position Statement: Sexual & Reproductive Health Services for Immigrant Youth


Immigrant youth

Healthy Teen Network believes that immigrant youth (people aged 24 and younger without U.S. citizenship or lawful permanent resident status) deserve comprehensive sexuality education and optimal sexual and reproductive health (SRH) services in order to achieve whole health. Sexual and reproductive health services should be designed and delivered with consideration for immigrant youth. Healthy Teen…

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