Chicago — College students and advocates are arming themselves with emergency contraceptives, condoms, pregnancy tests, voter registration drives and information about abortion access as they prepare to return to campus in states abortion has been banned or restricted, according to NBC.
“We have to do what we can legally to help people as much as we can,” said Nikita Kakkad, a junior at the University of Texas at Austin and an activist for reproductive rights. Texas is one of more than a dozen states that has banned or restricted abortion procedures after the Supreme Court overturned Roe vs. Wade in June.
“It’s important to be doing that now more than ever,” she added.
Kakkad is focusing on preventing pregnancies on campus through educational events, offering free Plan B and other resources.
Nimisha Srikanth, a senior at Texas A&M University and president of the group Feminists for Reproductive Equity & Education, said her group is taking a similar approach.
“We’re going to be really trying to amplify that and promote that more, because always after Texas does something related to reproductive health, we’ve seen an uptick in requests for Plan B,” she said.“If you’re a student, you can contact us. We’ll give you Plan B, condoms, pregnancy tests, other reproductive health products that people might need to maintain that bodily autonomy.”
Campus advocacy will become even more important in states with upcoming ballot measures on abortion rights, according to Margaret Velto, an outreach coordinator with the Kentucky Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice.
“That one is going to be a huge priority to get people educated about it,” said Velto, noting it could be another roadblock for legal abortion in her state.