Staff ed: Safe sex products and education should be more accessible to students

The wide variety and amount of safe sex products on AU’s campus should be applauded, but it’s not enough.

Sex is an integral part of college life, and AU currently does a great job of providing services to students who need them. There are currently four locations on campus where students can easily obtain safe sex packets for free, including female and male condoms, lubricant, a pamphlet about consent and instructions about how to use all of the materials.

The variety and availability of these products is great. But if AU wants to have an impact, they need to do more.

For instance, sex is not always planned around the 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. schedule during which the products are available. After that party on a Friday night, students have no options for free safe sex products. It is hard to plan for every weekend, and these products should be available late into the night when students really need them.

This issue could easily be solved by putting safe sex products in the residence halls. Areas such as floor bathrooms or lounges are accessible to students 24/7, so it would be best to place these products there to provide students with safe options at all times.

AU also needs to make sex education a part of their orientation material. If AU added safe sex education as a mandatory part of the orientation period, all students would come to college with an understanding of what safe sex means.

Currently, students are required to take a sexual assault orientation online, but basic safe sex education is still lacking from our orientation programs. Many students may have come from abstinence-only high schools and wouldn’t have had access to this information before.

AU is doing a good job with providing safe sex products on campus, but with just a few changes, it could be so much better. – E

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