A group of Fordham students who want better access to birth control are taking matters into their own hands, setting up an off-campus health clinic to combat the Catholic university's convoluted health care plan.
Bridgette Dunlap, a member of the Fordham Law Students for Reproductive Justice and organizer of "Prescribe Fordham," says the school not only makes it hard (and expensive) for students to get birth control, but they're also not clear with their policy when you enroll. "Fordham University prohibits the prescription of contraception in its health centers and the distribution of condoms on its campuses. Students who purchase insurance from Fordham incur a $100 'per condition' deductible to see an off-campus doctor for birth control; for students who learn of the school's policies only after visiting a Fordham health center, this may be in addition to the cost of an annual exam at Fordham," she said in a statement. So she set up Prescribe Fordham in an off-campus location as a one-stop clinic where students can see a doctor, give their medical history and receive a prescription for birth control.
In a statement to Jezebel, Fordham Director of Communications Bob Howe said that Dunlap and other FLSRJ students wouldn't be disciplined for the clinic, but "We are a Catholic university and do follow church teachings on birth control, among other issues. We don't believe that stance is a surprise to our students." As Slate notes, both sides have been surprisingly civil toward each other: "The students aren’t demanding that the school pass out free birth control, and the school is taking a hands-off approach to the group’s off-campus activities." Which is good news on all sides, though we can't wait to see how pissed the school gets when guys start coming in for the Pill, too.