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Back up Your Birth Control!

At 9:20 AM this morning, the FDA approved Emergency Contraception to be sold at pharmacies over the counter! This is huge success that people have been fighting for for years. While this is great, there is some not-so-hot news to accompany it. Unfortunately, it was only approved to be sold over the counter to people over the age of 18. This is bad for two major reasons. The first being that it totally de-recognizes (or condemns) the sexuality of young people. Without acknowledging and accepting the fact that people under the age of 18 are sexually active, the teen pregnancy rate will increase, as will the rate of STI and HIV infections, dating abuse, and a whole slew of other related sexual/relationship health problems.

The second reason this under 18 limit is bad is that it means that while you don't need a prescription to get EC, you may have to get it behind the counter, like cigarettes or condoms at some places, so that the pharmacist can ID you. This, as we know, is dangerous. Putting the sexual and reproductive health of women in the hands of pharmacists is not a good thing. Placing it behind the counter will make it harder to ask for, especially for young people, people of color, immigrants, and trans people. And, these are also the people most likely to be denied access to reproductive health care in the first place.

So, back up your birth control, learn more about EC (including why "the morning after pill" is a terrible misnomer and that you can also order EC online!), and talk to your friends about it. Yay reproductive health!

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