Abortion medication needs to be accessible on college campuses

Since we were in elementary school, we were always taught to use protection during sex. What happens when birth control fails?

Even with the most effective birth control methods, one in 100 women will still become pregnant, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

With the United States’ population hovering around 325 million people total, approximately half of them are female. With an estimated 163 million women in the US, that means relatively 1.6 million women will become pregnant.

Now, consider the medical resources women have readily access to. Very few.

However, men have a vast amount of resources.

If anyone were to need condoms, many places like public school campuses provide them free of charge, as well as many other methods. While that’s great for preventative measures, what happens when that one in 100 fails?

In Feb. 2017, Senator Connie Leyva introduced Senate Bill 320. The bill would require all Universities of California and California State Universities to provide students with access to medical abortion pills.

Opponents of the bill claim schools do not have enough funding for this type of initiative.

However, the Women’s Foundation of California, Tara Health Foundation and a private donor have agreed to pay for implementation.

President of Tara Health Foundation, Dr.. Ruth Shaber, said the estimated cost of implementation is approximately $14 million.

That figure “includes the training, any type of new equipment that’s necessary, and training in the processes, billing for the procedure, and making sure that the clinics are really prepared to implement the procedure and to offer the care well,” said Shaber.

Campuses provide screening and testing for sexually transmitted diseases and offer other services for students, so why not this one?

Approximately 500 students at California public universities seek medication abortions every month and many have to travel significant distances, according to a 2018 study by the Journal of Adolescent Health.

Being that this medical abortions can be given by nurse practitioners on campus, pushing the CSUs and UCs to offer them to students would show that medical abortions should be a part of basic health care, just like it should be.

To those who argue that this is against their religious and ethical values: Well, lucky for you, because as a medical provider you can opt out of providing these services to students in need.

As for student and other faculty on campus who also oppose this implementation, it’s very simple. Don’t use the services.

Why would you take away that access for other students, regardless if you would benefit from the services yourself?

Would I try to diminish the veterans resources on campus because I’m not a veteran? No. So why do that to students in need?

While the bill won’t be implemented into law immediately, it’s still something students should think about, particularly female students.

At the end of the day men do not have to face the consequences of birth control failure, so why should female students?

Women have the right to decide when they want to incorporate a family into their lives, and no one should be able to dictate that.