GUEST POST: Vermont has SASS, get your text on
By: Staff at Outright Vermont who work to build safe, healthy, and supportive environments for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning youth ages 13-22.
SASS (Seminars About Safer Sex) is a resource for queer and trans youth through age 22 to get accurate, reliable answers to any questions they might have healthy sexuality, safer sex, and gender identity. Youth can access SASS through text, (724-888-SASS (7277)), Tumblr, and in person from 5:00 to 6:00pm on the first Friday of every month at the Outright offices in Burlington.
The texting helpline was created in response to the 2013 VT Youth Risk Behavior Survey. “We looked at the data and it was overwhelming. It showed gay, lesbian, and bisexual identified youth in Vermont are much more likely to report engaging in riskier behavior,” co-creator Leah Cipri says. “724-888-SASS is safe, confidential, and provides medically accurate information,” adds Matt Shear. “The Internet is full of misinformation, and Google shouldn’t be the first place youth turn to for questions about their sexual health.” SASS aims to provide reliable, relatable, LGBT+ friendly sex education.
Accessible queer sex education is a youth-set priority, and the SASS textline serves to broaden that access. LGBT+ friendly sex education is unfortunately not common in schools. LGBT+ students can be left in the dark and not know where to go to find accurate sex education. SASS exists to be that place for queer and trans youth.
Youth can either ask questions online or text us at 724-888-7277. Both are free and completely confidential. Either way, your questions will be answered by trained staff who are dedicated to providing accessible sex education for all youth. Read more about SASS, the textline, and Outright Vermont’s approach to accessible sexual health programming on Outright's website.