We Unitarian Universalists can be proud of our long term commitment to sexual health and responsibility. Our “Our Whole Lives” curriculum is a model. Thousands of young people have benefited enormously from participating in it. Our “Welcoming Congregation” program has done much to build acceptance and understanding of LGBT people.
However, needs change. Last year the UUA underwent an assessment conducted by the Religious Institute (RI), which specializes in sexuality and religion. RI is headed by the Rev. Debra Haffner, a UU minister.
The review contains both good news and some recommendations. The good news has to do with our work in education and public witness. The recommendations have to do with work we need to do as an Association. We have already started implementation of such things as requiring a sexual health competency for ministerial fellowship and revisions to our human resources policies. The report recommends we implement staff trainings on such things as sexual harassment, which we have begun, and a revision of our Welcoming Congregations handbook.
While we have much of which we can be proud, we also have the same human frailties as others. Sadly, there have been cases of sexual misconduct over the years. We have to do whatever we can to educate ourselves and to create a safe environment for all.