Sex Week Gets Students on Campus Talking

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Chris Ayers

(Photo by Chris Ayers)

By Taylor Almond

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(Photo by Chris Ayers)
(Photo by Chris Ayers)

In conjunction with Valentine’s Day this week, the U’s Center for Student Wellness is hosting “Sex Week.”

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The week of events continues today with a Wellness Fair at the Student Life Center from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Thursday’s event will be a showing of the film “Obvious Child” at the Union Saltair Room beginning at noon.

Students for Choice, a campus group focused on reproductive health, partnered with Planned Parenthood to give away a year’s worth of birth control. Every event that students attend during the week gives them an entry ticket, and winners can choose from a variety of methods, including 365 condoms, a year of birth control pills or a vasectomy.

Cody James, a sophomore in sociology and political science, hasn’t attended an event but said the week is a “good idea.”

“People are gonna have sex no matter what — might as well prevent them [from] dropping out of school if they get pregnant,” he said.

But he had a caveat.

“Whether you get the people who need to know is actually a better question,” James said. “The people that actually need to know might be shy. It’s a taboo subject, and they might feel awkward attending.”

Merritt Cook, a freshman in French, said Utah’s typically conservative ways could be a barrier to the information.

“I could see, in the Mormon culture, it being a bad thing to go to that because sex is something you’re not supposed to do until you’re married,” Cook said.

The student group Right to Life has petitioned to defund and relocate the Sex Week event, citing the birth control giveaway as “promoting wanton and negligent sex among U students” in a released statement.

“If Sex Week is supposed to be an educational event, why are sexual assault and sexual responsibility not the primary focuses? Sex Week gives horny students an opportunity to become even hornier, yet it does not offer any condolences to victims nor aid for future victims,” the group’s statement continues.

Funding for the events was provided by Planned Parenthood and ASUU, a funding pool to which student fees contribute.

Cook doesn’t see why the two groups are in conflict and said an event like this could be co-sponsered by Right to Life, Students for Choice and the LDS Institute on campus.

“[The event] could be for anyone sexually active,” Cook said. “It’s always good to have a place to ask questions … even if you are married, you could still make a mistake. It’s still smart to have safe sex, regardless of what place in your relationship you’re at.”

For more information on the Sex Week events, visit Students for Choice Utah’s Facebook page.

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