Over the past year URGE’s affiliate group at Texas A&M, Feminists for Reproductive Equity & Education (FREE), has been most focused on preventing sexual assault on their campus by hosting consent workshops and working to get the school to adopt an official definition of consent. FREE (formerly called Aggies for Reproductive Justice) hosted interactive workshops that highlighted campus policy. Prior to the fall semester beginning they succeeded and Texas A&M agreed to advise it’s sexual assault policy to include an affirmative definition of consent. Read more about this great work in an article from their student paper.
In October, the UAFC held a State of the Queer Union panel to discuss some of the major issues facing queer communities in the United States. The panel was made up of queer identified professors and students from the campus, and included lively and complex question and conversation from the audience. Elliot Spillers, the president of the SGA was also present, and discussed his interest in making campus more safe and inclusive for queer individuals.
Members of URGE at University of Alabama at Huntsville performed an assessment with a representative of their Student Health Center to evaluate the reach of their reproductive healthcare services. They are now working with individuals from the University of Alabama in Birmingham to create a climate survey to further assess the feelings of students on campus about the health center.
URGE UC is already off to a busy start after becoming a registered student group at the University of Cincinnati! One of their ongoing campaigns this semester is a campus wide menstruation product drive. They are collecting menstruation products to donate to local shelters and have partnered with UC’s Women’s Center, RAPP Center, EPS, and LGBTQ Center. If you are a UC student and wish to donate you can find collection boxes at Steger Student Life Center.
The Heidelberg University URGE chapter, located in Tiffin, Ohio, decorated paper bags with phrases about using condoms with new members to distribute in the residence halls. This action was the kickoff to their campaign to institutionalize condom distribution at the university, and to pass out 500 condoms to students on campus. Fall 2015-spring 2016 is the first full academic year for URGE at the ‘Berg, and they are ready to make change on campus!
On August 27th, the Alabama Alliance for Reproductive Justice and University of Alabama Feminist Caucus talked to thousand of students and gave away hundreds of condoms at UA’s student involvement fair, Get On Board Day! Here are just a few pictures of these campus activists doing outreach and spreading the word that feminist and repro justice activists are present and proud on campus!
Our chapter at Ohio University, FEM at OU, had a busy year full of advocacy. When the extreme anti-choice group, Created Equal, arrived on campus, they decided to cap off the semester with a counter-protest. Gathering members with signs, they distributed condoms and flyers to counter the misinformation Created Equal was peddling on their campus. The kicker? They put these flyers on wire hangers to remind their fellow students just what would happen if these anti-choice groups got their way. FEM has another active year planned ahead. They are collaborating with other student groups for a voter registration party as one of the first events once they are back on campus.
This summer Feminist Caucus (UAFC), a chapter at The University of Alabama, participated in legal observation, escorting, and clinic defense at Reproductive Health Services in Montgomery, Alabama during the Operation Save America (OSA) siege of the city. UAFC had nearly ten members attend a legal observation training in late June where they learned skills that were not only applicable to the OSA defense, but also for defending the clinic in Tuscaloosa near campus. Four UA Feminists turned out to work with the clinic during the week of the siege. Back in the spring, UAFC held several events, including Silhouette: From the Shadows to the Spotlight, an open mic and spoken-word event, and a town hall meeting about campus sexual assault, which about 40 students attended.
The Bowling Green State University URGE chapter, FORCE, has held their elections for the 2015-2016 year. We are excited to see another amazing and productive year from the new leaders. Congrats, new FORCE executive board! President – Angelo Andersky Vice President – Nicole Campos Treasurer – Paige Reinhart-Anez Affiliate Chair – Heather Paramore PR – Jess Brodersen Outreach Chair – Brit Embry and Bea Fields
URGE at CSULB asked several partners to join them in encouraging self love for students for an entire week. They set up a banner where students could write what they loved about themselves. Additionally, partners set up booths including a “yay scale” which replaced numbers on a scale with positive affirmations whenever someone stepped on it, a table with body paint to create temporary tattoos, and a table to take shameless selfies. The event used the hashtags #selflove #urgecsulb