The Ohio State University deprives its students of reproductive healthcare. These are our demands.
Sign the Petition here.
Emergency contraception (levonorgestrel) is free for University of Cincinnati students at their Women’s Center, while OSU students face a cost barrier.
There are many reasons why a student may have difficulty obtaining timely emergency contraception through Student Health Services, such as the need for a weekend appointment or for privacy as a minor whose parents can access medical records. Vending machines have successfully met this need at Boston University, Stanford, University of California, etc.
The abortion pill (commonly mifepristone + misoprostol) has been available to students at The University of Illinois – Chicago since 2006. OSU doesn’t provide it at all.
The Wexner Medical Center is always eager to boast about its rankings and the scope of its services. But as the largest health system serving the Columbus Metropolitan area of over two million people, they have abandoned the task of providing this critical medical procedure to their patients and left two small abortion clinics in the city to bear that burden. OSU’s cowardice is revealed to be even greater when they refuse to even mention the word “abortion” or the opportunity for referrals on the Wexner Medical Center or Student Health Services websites. OSU has multiple gynecological health sites, outpatient surgical centers, and even a gynecologic surgery center. It would be incredibly easy to set up abortion service infrastructure for patients to schedule electively, instead of waiting for a threat to the patient’s health before physicians can perform one.
At least one of these centers should be within the central hospital area or within similar walking distance of campus. And until that is set up, OSU must provide transportation for any students that request it to and from the nearest abortion provider.
Pads and tampons should be available in every bathroom, regardless of the binary gender label on the door. Every library, every academic building, every medical center building or wing, every dining hall, every resident hall public bathroom, and behind every front desk for resident halls with in-suite bathrooms. And those cheap, bulky-yet-wingless pads (if you know, you know) aren’t gonna cut it. We want tampons in the three standard sizes, and pads in at least two sizes for different flow levels (with wings for the heavier pad).
This is mandated by Title IX on paper, but students still report difficulty getting professors to approve absences without disclosing the nature of their medical emergency, or having absences approved for travel/procedure days but not additional recovery days. The administration can solve this by relaxing attendance policies for all courses and/or expanding the scope of Student Life - Disability Services to act as a confidential accommodation liaison for short-term medical emergencies instead of only long-term conditions. And all of this should also apply to debilitating menstrual cramps.
Students have the right to know where to get help for an unwanted pregnancy, just as they would for an ear infection or a broken arm. Those local abortion clinics— Planned Parenthood and Your Choice Healthcare— should be referenced on any potentially relevant gynecological healthcare webpages, Title IX and post-incident resource webpages, presentations about sexual wellness to students (as through First Year Experience, Student Life, or the Student Wellness Center), etc.
OSU must never under any circumstances advertise a ‘crisis pregnancy center,’ as they’re known to lie to patients and delay abortion care in the hopes of preventing it entirely.
The police do not keep us safe. They protect and serve the capitalist class, their own prejudiced and violent whims, and laws that you never voted for— including the laws mandating that you carry a fetus to term at nearly any personal cost. It is within President Johnson's power to instruct OSU’s Department of Public Safety to not report out abortion-related "offenses," and even to dismantle the relationship with Columbus PD altogether, and this is long overdue for the safety of all.
OSUPD’s entire budget, including the additional $20 million OSU pledged in 2021, should then be invested into services that directly support students, including the other demands on this list.
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