Ad urges teens to delay sex, stresses AIDS threat

July 08, 1992|By Liz Atwood | Liz Atwood,Staff Writer

Following on its popular "virgin" ad, Campaign for Our Children has released an advertisement focusing on AIDS as another reason for teens to delay having sex.

The recently released public service ad shows a young man playing taps while the written message appears on the side, informing viewers that acquired immune deficiency syndrome has become a leading cause of death among teen-agers.

Chuck Donofrio, executive vice president of Baltimore advertising agency Richardson, Myers & Donofrio Inc., which produced the ad, said that even though Campaign for Our Children is focusing on AIDS rather than pregnancy, the message of abstinence is the same.

"What we wanted to convey is that there is an incredible risk in having sex," he said.

Previous ads have included the one with the spray-painted word "virgin," which says: "Teach your kids it's not a dirty word"; pictures of babies with the line: "It's amazing how many guys disappear when one of these shows up"; and the commercial with the teen-age boy who expresses amazement that his girlfriend won't have sex with him. He asks, "What does that make me?" His question is answered with a shot of a rat.

Mr. Donofrio said the ads, aimed at children 9 to 14, appear to be working. In the past two years, the pregnancy rate among state teen-agers has dropped more than 10 percent.

The campaign is financed by state and private money.

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