GOP rejects funding for teen pregnancy prevention program

<p>(Photo: CPR/Megan Verlee)</p>
<p>Laurisa Rodrigues, health educator at the Pueblo City-County Health Department clinic, shows off some of the pharmaceutical models she uses to explain the qualities of the different long-acting reversible contraceptives available to clinic patients.</p>

Senate Republicans rejected a bipartisan measure to help fund a counseling program aimed at preventing teen pregnancy and reducing high-school dropout rates.

The state-run initiative emphasizes abstinence and teaches teens how to avoid pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases. No birth-control is provided.

The program currently operates only on the Western Slope. However, the measure sought to expand it statewide with the help of federal and state funds. The program expires on September 2016, but the bill would have extended that date to 2020.