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Miss America endorses AIDS prevention tools

In endorsing AIDS prevention tools such as condom distribution in schools and providing clean needles to drug addicts, Kate Shindle waded into a controversy no other Miss America has broached.

She follows in the footsteps of other recent Miss Americas who have used their positions to focus on substantive issues. For example, Miss America 1996 Shawntel Smith spoke out in favor of early career training for schoolchildren, and Heather Whitestone, the deaf ballerina from Alabama, became in 1995 the first Miss America with a disability.