Contraceptives — including condoms, emergency contraception pills and birth control — can lead to safer sex and fewer accidental pregnancies. But some UNC students struggle to access them, whether it be because of cost, privacy or awareness.
A 2017 study by the Guttmacher Institute, a sexual and reproductive health organization, found that the improved access and use of contraceptives leads to fewer unwanted pregnancies, and thus a lower rate of abortions.
The study also found that public efforts to increase access to contraceptive methods often proves effective.
Put simply, if college students have access to contraceptives, they are less likely to experience an accidental pregnancy, and potentially an abortion.
UNC provides many of these supplies and they are available in many places on campus.
Safer sex supplies are available for free at UNC Campus Health, the Student Stores Pharmacy and in the Student Union. Students can order, refill or get prescribed birth control through Campus Health.
A variety of emergency contraception pills can be purchased at Campus Health or the Student Stores Pharmacy. They are also available in the "Healthy Heels to Go" vending machines located in Rams Head Recreation Center and the Student Union.
Farah Flowers, a residential advisor in Horton Residence Hall, said part of her job is to supply the students in her residential hall with support and resources. One of the ways she does this is in by helping them to access contraceptives.
"I think it's important that we provide the means for people who don't want to get pregnant to not get pregnant," she said.