USI Launches National Sexual Health Awareness and Guidance Campaign
The Sexual Health Awareness and Guidance Week 2019 (SHAG) focused on areas such as:
- STI’s (awareness, prevention, testing and treatment)
- Unplanned Pregnancy (promotion of HSE MyOptions services)
- Contraception (the various methods of contraception and how to use them)
Throughout the week, 30,000 ‘SHAG PACKS’ were distributed around USI affiliated colleges in Ireland. The contents of these included condoms, lubricant, information on consent, STIs and contraception. During the week many consent education workshops took place across the country.
The President of the Union of Students in Ireland (USI), Síona Cahill said;
“It is widely recognised that students have not received adequate sexual health and wellbeing education in primary and post-primary, and SHAG week is an opportunity to educate them about safer sex, how to protect themselves from STI’s or unplanned pregnancies, as well as the importance of consent, and has done so for over two decades. We will continue to advocate and support moves to improve the sex ed curriculum as a matter of urgency”.
Is the first time in Irish history that the Union of Students can legally provide all-options for unplanned pregnancy information through HSE MyOptions, after 35 years of student activism for pro-choice healthcare. USI will strive to ensure each student reached throughout this campaign will be given legal and responsible information on how to access abortion care, should they need it.
USI also partnered with The National Women’s Council of Ireland in their ‘Ending Sexual Violence and Harassment in Third Level Education’ campaign which seeks to reflect the experiences of what forms the cultural societal norms which are deeply rooted in gender stereotypes. You can find a video and images from the mural installation during their support for this campaign here.