Students advocate for birth control

James Niedzinski

Equinox Staff


Abortion and the right to life are constant hot-button issues.  However, one nationwide campaign, Birth Control Matters, hopes to reduce the numbers of unintended births as well as the safety of the mother and child. New Hampshire legislature is on the verge of covering birth control under a majority of insurance companies.

Birth Control Matters is sponsored by Planned Parenthood, and according to their website, “[we] support making prescription birth control available without co-pays. The new health care reform law should make prescription birth control available to every woman without co-pays or other out-of-pocket costs to ensure that every woman has access to the birth control that works best for her.”

According to Keene State College senior Lauren Peckler, an advocate for the bill, Planned Parenthood has many more responsibilities than providing women birth control.  Other issues addressed are free breast exams, pap-smear tests, and STD treatment.

“Our focus is on Obama’s health care plan. We want birth control to be covered by insurance, making it more affordable,” Peckler said.

On campus, birth control is more affordable compared to off-campus rates, thanks to health care fees.

“There are four different types of birth control available: Sronyx and Solia are both $13, Trinessa is $14, and Mononessa is $15. This is all for a one-month supply,” Tiffany Mathews, coordinator of Wellness Education at Health Services, said.

Peckler is currently preparing a petition to get birth control covered under insurance. Her goal is to grab 500 signatures, and then she will hand it over to congress.

According to the American College National Health Assessment, 76 percent of KSC students have had zero to two sexual partners in one year.  Of that percentage of students, 73 percent have used birth control.  Of those 73 percent who did use birth control, nearly 77 percent used the birth control pill as the form of contraception.

“I think the upside of this would be that students could prevent pregnancies, and it would not result in more copulation on campus,” Mathews said.

“Planned Parenthood is basically under attack by some traditional conservatives and some happened to be republicans, but we are a loud minority,” Peckler said.

Mathews made it clear that she stands by the mission statement of Health Services, and does not stand one way or the other.  One of their statement reads,  “To prepare students to be their own health advocates and informed consumers of appropriate services which will foster the development of the habits of mind and character that prepare them for productive lives and work.”


James Niedzinski can be contacted at


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