Twenty-two high school in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, will be part of a condom distribution pilot program in an attempt to reduce sexually transmitted infections and diseases (STIs) among Philadelphia teenagers.
The schools with the highest rates of STIs among students were selected to be a part of the program that features condom dispensers inside school health offices. Condoms were available to students prior to this program once a year when the school district offered free STI testing, but were not available year round. The results of the annual STI tests were used to justify the pilot program as well as to determine which schools would be selected to participate. With the new program, students can take condoms from the dispensers as needed providing that their parents did not elect to opt out of the program.
Philadelphia school district spokesman Fernando Gallard told reporters, "We believe distributing condoms is part of our obligation to keep students healthy and to remain healthy. The health department has described this as a continued epidemic of STDs among teenagers in Philadelphia." According to Donald F. Schultz, deputy mayor for health and opportunity, told the Philadelphia Inquirer that despite falling STI rates in the city since April 2011, teenagers make up approximately 25% of new HIV infections.
Media Resources: ThinkProgress 1/3/2013; ABC News 12/26/2012; Philadelphia Inquirer 12/24/2012
7/1/2015 Women's Rights Activists are Suing the Kenyan Government for Reproductive Rights - A woman in Kenya is suing the Kenyan government for failure to provide safe and legal abortions, which caused her daughter - a 15-year-old rape victim - to suffer a kidney failure after undergoing the procedure illegally.
Currently, there are four petitioners on the case: the mother of the survivor, the Federation of Women Lawyers-Kenya, and two other women's rights advocates. . . .
6/30/2015 Supreme Court Ruling Prevents Gerrymandering in Arizona - In a 5-4 decision delivered by Justice Ginsburg this morning, the Supreme Court upheld Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission, allowing the use of independent state commissions that draw federal congressional districts, taking that power away from the state legislature.
This gives states an opportunity to deal with partisan gerrymandering by giving an independent commission power to draw federal congressional districts.
In 2000, Arizona voters amended their constitution, shifting the responsibility of drawing congressional districts, previously held by the state legislature, to a panel called the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission. . . .