Drew University's decision to no longer offer a basket of free condoms in the lobby of its student health services department on account of theft and cost has come under fire from students.
At the end of the last school year, the health services department decided it would not replace the basket of free condoms after people were repeatedly taking large quantities at once and someone even took the basket, said Drew spokesperson David Muha. "Some were not respecting the spirit in which they were being offered," he said of the honor-based system. Students can still request free condoms from resident assistants (RAs), he added.
Although the university only spent "several hundred dollars" in providing the condoms, health services had to make budget cuts and decided the program was not working, said Muha. The department will no longer provide free Gatorade or over-the-counter ibuprofen to students as well, he said.
Some students questioned the move and asked the administration to reconsider. "An incident of someone grabbing the entire box is simple vandalism and it's a cheap excuse for cutting back on providing students with safety," said sophomore Kelby Katz.
Students may not feel comfortable having to ask for free condoms, students said. "Some students don't want their RAs to know. They feel they have a right to privacy," said graduate student Eric Drew.
RA Brianne Flynn said she is disappointed by the decision because she knew that students used the free service. "It makes me wonder if students will use (condoms) less," she said, noting that so far this year no students have asked her for condoms.