Former U.S. surgeon general David Satcher on Wednesday called the teaching of sex education in schools that stresses both abstinence and contraception as "vital" in helping reduce HIV and sexually transmitted disease infections and teen pregnancies, the Denver Post reports. Speaking at the 39th annual conference of the Association of Reproductive Health Professionals in Denver, Satcher also urged families, churches, and other community institutions to teach youth about sex and contraception. "Sex education should be pervasive in our lives, just as sex is pervasive in our lives," he explained. "School is the great equalizer. If sex education is not there, then some children are not going to get it." Satcher, whose four-year term as surgeon general ended in February, became a foe of the Bush administration when he authorized the June 2001 release of a report that advocated comprehensive school-based sex education for American youth.