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Position Statements

Founded 1967, AASECT is devoted to the promotion of sexual health by the development and advancement of the fields of sexuality education, counseling and therapy. With this mission, AASECT accepts the responsibility of training, certifying and advancing high standards in the practice of sexuality education services, counseling and therapy.

When contentious topics and cultural conflicts impede sexuality education and health care, AASECT may publish position statements to clarify standards to protect consumer sexual health and sexual rights.

Our Vision of Sexual Health - AASECT affirms the fundamental value of sexuality as an inherent, essential, and beneficial dimension of being human.

Position on the Dignity and Rights of Transgender and Gender-Expansive Individuals - AASECT affirms the dignity and rights of transgender and gender-expansive (TGE) individuals and communities, and aims to help create a safe and welcoming environment in which TGE people can feel affirmed, empowered, and respected.

Position on the Dignity and Rights of Asexual Individuals - AASECT takes the position that asexuality and ace-spectrum identities are not mental, developmental, or sexual disorders. They are not responses to trauma or inexperience - they are valid and fulfilling identities and orientations.

Black Lives Matter: A Commitment from the AASECT Board of Directors - The Board of Directors of the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors, and Therapists joins its membership in collective mourning and outrage over the killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, Tony McDade, and countless other murders not captured on video or highlighted in the media.

Position on Sex Addiction - AASECT recognizes that people may experience significant physical, psychological, spiritual and sexual health consequences related to their sexual urges, thoughts or behaviors.

Position on the Dignity and Rights of Transgender, Gender Nonbinary, and Gender Nonconforming Individuals - AASECT in the strongest possible terms reaffirms its commitment to the dignity and rights of all transgender, gender nonbinary, and gender nonconforming people.

Position Statement Opposing Ban of Trans in Military - Update: JANUARY 25, 2021 | Executive Order on Enabling All Qualified Americans to Serve Their Country in Uniform | We thank the Biden Administration for this action and the countless voices who fought against this block on transgender Americans serving in the military. To those who serve in the armed forces, we thank you for your valiant service and we stand with you.

Position on Reparative Therapy - AASECT takes the position that having a non-heterosexual sexual orientation, that being transgender and being gender non-conforming, are not mental disorders.

Position on FOSTA-SESTA and its Impact on Consensual Sex Work and the Chilling of Sexual Speech - AASECT affirms its support for sex workers and the principle that “sex work is work.” AASECT broadly defines sex work, in accordance with recent policy statements by the World Health Organization (WHO) and Amnesty International, as a commercial exchange of sexual services undertaken by people of all genders for some form of remuneration, such as money, food, or shelter. AASECT supports the rights of sex workers to choose this work and to have access to resources that make sex work safer, including online advertising platforms.

Position on Sexuality Education - AASECT affirms that limiting access to comprehensive sexuality education equates to violence against individuals across the lifespan. The alternative to comprehensive sexuality education, i.e., abstinence-only programming, leads to myriad negative consequences including increased rates of unintended pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections (Santilli et al., 2017). These programs are shame-based and harmful to sexual minorities. Also problematic is the dearth of comprehensive sexuality education developed for populations such as older adults, the disabled, individuals with special education needs, and those who would benefit from culturally specific curricula.

Position on Consent and Sexual Violence - AASECT affirms that freedom from sexual violence (including but not limited to harassment, assault, coercion, threats, abuse, and rape) is a human right. Individuals of all genders, orientations, and identities should be free to choose when (and if) they engage in sexual behaviors and with whom. Any verbal coercion, manipulation, pressure or sex against an individual's will is never acceptable.

Position Statement on Abortion - The ongoing conversation about abortion is not simply a moral or a spiritual debate— it is a discussion of human rights and bodily autonomy for all people who can become pregnant.  Laws that restrict access to safe induced abortions violate the sexual rights outlined by the World Association of Sexual Health (WAS).

Position on Touch and the AASECT Certified Professional - The question has been asked "When is it acceptable to touch patients/clients? When is it not sexual misconduct? The AASECT Code of Conduct speaks to sexual misconduct

Position on Sexual Expression Including Orientation and Identity - We oppose any and all therapy models and interventions as well as any educational programs and curricula that seek to pathologize, dictate, or prescribe a person’s sexual orientation, identity, and/or consensual, sexual expression, whether or not it is conventional or atypical. Regardless of how such clinical interventions or educational programs are labeled or named, AASECT recommends all helping and educating professionals to utilize best practices and culturally relevant resources for foundation and reference.

NCSF Sexual Freedom Resolution - Working within the framework of social justice and human rights, we support the right of freedom of sexual expression among consenting adults. We affirm that sexual expression is central to the human experience, that this right is central to overall health and well-being, and that this right must be honored. We support the right to be free from discrimination, oppression, exploitation and violence due to one's sexual expression.