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Leaders of a number of national groups that describe themselves as "pro-family'' held a press conference in Washington last Friday to urge that public officials promote sexual abstinence among the nation's young people.

The newly formed Coalition for Teen Health, whose coordinator is the conservative activist Phyllis Schlafly, released a letter to U.S. Surgeon General C. Everett Koop calling for actions that would help "end the promiscuous society brought about by the sexual-liberation movement of the last 20 years.''

The letter took aim at the campaign, led by Dr. Koop, to familiarize young Americans with condoms and other means of protection against acquired immune deficiency syndrome.

The campaign seeks to "institutionalize and validate promiscuity of both the heterosexual and homosexual varieties,'' the letter charges, "by means of false advertising in the media and false instruction in the schools which teach that condoms make 'casual' sex behavior acceptable and safe.''

Coalition members said that Dr. Koop should urge state legislatures to "mandate all public schools to teach children to practice sexual abstinence until, as adults, they make a commitment to a monogamous, lifetime marriage.''

Ms. Schlafly characterized the coalition's demands as "harmonious with public statements made by the President on this issue.'' Joining her in signing the letter were 55 representatives from such groups as The Roundtable, The Conservative Caucus, the National Association of Pro-America, Accuracy in Media, and the Plymouth Rock Foundation.

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