Help Ensure Access to Birth Control in Lorain, other letters
To the Editors:
While pharmacists are permitted by law to refuse prescriptions, this is intended for cases in which the refusal is in the best medical interest of the patient, or if the prescription is suspected to be faulty or forged. But pharmacists across the country are refusing to fill legitimate prescriptions for birth control and emergency contraception because of their conflicting personal beliefs. And though in the case of a refusal, a pharmacist is required to refer the patient to another pharmacy, many pharmacists do not.
I’ve been working with OPIRG’s Sexual Health Awareness and Availability Campaign to help bring about some change — our goal is to ensure that at least 50 percent of pharmacies in Lorain County fill prescriptions for emergency contraception and birth control.
We’ve called nearly every pharmacy in Lorain County to discover their official policies regarding the distribution of birth control and emergency contraception, and on 4/14 and 4/15, OPIRG and SURF are hosting a Secret Shopper Weekend where anyone (of any gender!) can stop by and call a pharmacy, pretending to need a prescription filled.
Afterward, the pharmacists’ responses will be compared to the corporate policies, and if pharmacists are refusing to fill prescriptions without referring customers to another pharmacy, we will report them to their corporate offices and take further steps.
This is a serious issue. Pharmacists are inhibiting safe sexual practices — but if we can show the corporate offices that their policies are being disregarded, we can create change in the Lorain County pharmacies.–Zach Diamond
To the Editors:
I am committed to Oberlin being an accessible, excellent learning community where students are empowered to change the world.
I had the privilege of serving on Student Senate for two years, where I helped many student organizations get chartered, helped advocate for the college’s adoption of Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Silver minimum standards and successfully lobbied for expanding the college’s all-gender housing policy. I was also involved at Oberlin with volleyball, Fairkid Co-op and various other political activities such as the Roosevelt Institution and the OC Dems.
I believe it is the job of the class trustee to serve as a liaison between the board and students, to help facilitate dialogue and to empower students to be included in the development of College policies and procedures. I have advocated hard at Oberlin for the integral involvement of students in the decision-making process, from increasing voting student representation on strategic planning working groups to organizing numerous forums with key administrators.
I am asking for your support because I believe I will be able to effectively fight for you. I will address openness within the board structure. I will advocate for including arts space in our discussions and for marketing to be just that — marketing, not an attempt to change our institution.
Oberlin needs to be financially sustainable not through diminishing but by increasing our diversity. Oberlin must be an environmental leader.
We’ll be undergoing a lot of transition next year. I would like to make sure we keep Oberlin true to its values and that you have a part in it. If you have any questions or comments, please don’t hesitate to call my cell at (302) 981-3007 or to e-mail me at Ezra.Temko@oberlin.edu.–Ezra Temko, OC ’06