Positive sexuality and healthy sexual and reproductive health are Government priorities. As we are sexual beings, positive sexual identity and sexuality are fundamental to our sense of self, self-esteem and ability to lead a fulfilling life.
The Government’s concern focuses on two key areas:
- New Zealand’s increasing number of sexually transmitted infections (STIs), particularly chlamydia, gonorrhoea and HIV
- the high level of unintended/unwanted pregnancies.
New Zealand has had some success, for example, in maintaining a relatively low prevalence of HIV transmission, and some individual programmes have addressed unintended/unwanted pregnancy. We have learnt that success means an ongoing commitment – these issues do not go away.
Given the continued need for action and the lessons we have learnt, this document is the first phase of a two-phase process to guide the health sector.
Phase one provides the guiding principles and outlines the strategic direction.
Phase two involves the development of population-specific plan for Maori and another document for Pacific peoples, which will guide and relate to specific action plans for the management of STIs, addressing unwanted/ unintended pregnancy and HIV/AIDS.
A plan for sexual abuse and sexual violence will also be developed.