Town hall addresses birth control prices

By Pitt News Staff

Student Government Board held a town hall meeting last night to address women’s issues…. Student Government Board held a town hall meeting last night to address women’s issues.

According to Campus Women’s Organization, some of the issues that should be addressed by SGB include support for women’s sports, lobbying Congress about price increases for birth control pills for students and raising awareness about rape and sexual assault during freshman programs.

SGB will vote next week on a resolution on birth control – the cost of which has increased for students because of a legislative oversight in the Deficit Reduction Act. The act prevents college pharmacies from providing birth control to students at a discount.

Shannon Black of CWO asked that SGB look into options to help raise student awareness about rape and sexual assault as early as freshman orientation.

Board member Francee Varner added that a student approached her about a time she became sick and went to the emergency room. The student wanted to be tested for drugs that she thought might have been placed in her drink. The emergency room didn’t test automatically for those drugs, even though they are detectable only for a short amount of time.

“They can’t not be able to test someone for date rape drugs,” Varner said. “That’s really sad.”

Lauren Stoner, also of CWO, suggested that SGB help facilitate programs that would initiate student attendance at women’s sports events, especially after the women’s basketball team’s success this year.

Board members suggested adding more loyalty points for women’s games and adding women’s games to criteria for an “out-of-classroom curriculum,” which is being proposed for next fall.

Board member Lacee Ecker said the new curriculum is not official yet, but administrators are creating a program where students earn points for attending out-of-class events that promote responsibility, culture and leadership. She said that attending women’s sports games could be counted as an activity reflecting diversity, which is one of the criteria for the program.

Board President Sumter Link thought that encouraging women’s sports was “definitely possible.”

“Dean [of students Kathy] Humphrey is probably the biggest Pitt women’s basketball fan I know,” Link said.

SGB Notes