Sometimes you need a barrier for something sexy after the Health & Counseling Center closes at 4:30 p.m. on weekdays or all day for the weekend. Or, perhaps you might not want to trek to the Health & Counseling Center, which to most on campus students feels like a hike, similarly to the nearest CVS where a pack of 12 external condoms costs about $10.
Everyone at UNCA should have access to safer sex materials, along with proper education on how to use and store them.
UNCA should consider implementing free safer sex material dispensers throughout campus.
Only 26.4 percent of college students report always wearing a condom, according to the U.S. National Library of Medicine. Some reasons students might not use barriers may be because of the availability, affordability or lack of proper sex education. Another reason may be because they are already fluid bonded with their partner, which means that sexual partners have agreed to opt out of using barriers and share bodily fluids with each other.
The Health & Counseling Center at UNC Asheville encourages students to utilize their safer sex materials as well as place online orders for them via Google form, which are typically fulfilled within 24 hours.
The school should circulate diagrams or pamphlets on how to use safer sex materials and common misconceptions about them. For example, storing condoms in a wallet can damage them. Perhaps they could also include diagrams which show users how to make a dental dam from an external condom when in need of one.
Practicing safer sex is a human right and we should promote the use of barriers, which decrease risks of unintended pregnancies and STIs.
Some may say free barrier dispense might look tacky or be somewhat expensive. But there are many more pros to the dispensers than cons, like decreasing risks of STIs, promoting safer sex on campus and smashing stigma on sex.
Sexual wellness is general wellness that should be recognized and encouraged through offering students and everyone on campus access to free barrier dispensers.
If you are unsure of your sexual health status, you should set up an appointment with the Health & Counseling Center for a free STI screening offered to UNCA students once a semester. The screening tests for chlamydia, gonorrhea, and HIV. Contact (828) 251-6520