SALT LAKE CITY – The University of Utah is seeing a lot of success with a new Safer sex campaign designed to promote safer sex practices among their students. It works like Grub Hub or Door Dash, but they’re offering birth control devices instead of food.
Handing out things like condoms and lubricants to students isn’t new for the University of Utah Center for Student Wellness. Assistant Director of Health Education Jenna Templeton says they’ve distributed them at their office or from display tables at student events. However, she says some students may be hesitant or too embarrassed to ask for them while campus officials are around.
Templeton says, “We know that the peer-to-peer relationship feel more trustworthy and safe for students.”
Last month, the center launched the “Pleasure Pack Delivery Service.” Templeton says it’s more discreet and more convenient for students who need them.
“This is a student-developed project and before we adopted it, we were already handing out condoms to our students. In adopting this program, we just have a wider reach,” she says.
During the first week, there were roughly 30 orders. However, the number of orders essentially doubled each week since then.
“Since January 13th, we’ve had over 250 orders come in,” according to Templeton.
This service launched nearly the same time as the Utah Department of Health’s HIV awareness campaign, which got major pushback from Governor Gary Herbert. That campaign was stopped partly due to the suggestive messages written on the packaging. However, Templeton says there isn’t any innuendo on any of the products they distribute.
Along with the condoms and lubricants, the packages include literature about consent and information on how they can contact the Center for Student Wellness.
Templeton says, “What we know from the data is that if we provide students with access to resources, information and safer sex supplies then they will make safer decisions around sex. It won’t promote them to have sex if they aren’t currently doing it.”