What Will It Take To End Cervical Cancer?


This article is cross-posted from and in partnership with the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health, and is published as part of a series on cervical cancer.

See all our coverage of Cervical Cancer Awareness Month 2012 here.

Maybe it’s because I’m into getting things done for the New Year, but I really dig lists. Here is my list of things I believe it will take to end cervical cancer.

  1. Comprehensive Sexuality Education (which must include an analysis and centering of race, ethnicity, class, relationship and immigration status, disability, citizenship, and not just a gender binary and sexual orientation),
  2. Collective commitment to valuing the bodies of people of Color,
  3. Collective commitment to valuing the bodies of transgender and intersex people,
  4. Recognize and change the way we police the bodies of women, people of Color and immigrants when it comes to cervical cancer, 
  5. Include all men in conversations, education, and efforts around cervical cancer,
  6. Include youth in preparing and implementing educational efforts around HPV and cervical cancer,
  7. Honest dialogues and inclusion of people who have non-traditional and controversial perspectives (i.e. anti-vaccination, conspiracy theories)
  8. Understanding and disseminating of information on non-verbal communication and its connections to cervical cancer,
  9. Challenging ideologies that all forms of cervical cancer are transmitted only through sexual contact,
  10. Connect with all reproductive cancer survivors, communities, prevention and education spaces to build,
  11. Demystify the shame that comes with our reproductive organs and genitals,
  12. Trust all parents (especially young parents) to do what is best for their children versus forcing, coercing, and threatening them (to get their child vaccinated),
  13. Support grassroots efforts to educate, support, and provide care to communities that are under-resourced,
  14. Connecting same gender and same sex relationships to cervical cancer prevention efforts, 
  15. Make clear and honest connections between HPV, oral sex, and throat cancer,
  16. Join, support, or host a Walk for Cervical Cancer in your area (find out how here),
  17. Provide support to caregivers of those living with cervical cancer,
  18. Center the testimonios of cervical cancer survivors, 
  19. Honor the memories of those who have died of cervical cancer,
  20. Recognize that cervical cancer is preventable! 

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Follow Bianca I. Laureano on twitter: @latinosexuality