Roosevelt High School opened a health clinic in partnership with Planned Parenthood that allows students to be screened for sexually transmitted diseases, have a pregnancy test, and receive birth control.
It came about after a nurse at the school recognized the need for this kind of counseling and medical care and reached out to Planned Parenthood for help. The school is the Boyle Heights neighborhood of Los Angeles and is home to mostly low income Latino students and, according to the LATimes article about the clinic, Latino families need and want access to information about health care.
Personally, I am thrilled that there is an option for teens that isn’t simply telling them ‘Don’t have sex.’ It’s unrealistic. What is realistic and reasonable is to give kids information and resources so they can make smart choices.
One girl in the story said that she was at the clinic because she didn’t want to get pregnant. Thank God there is a place for her to go and get help so she doesn’t end up with a baby she doesn’t want and can’t care for. In an ideal world she would be able to go to her mother and say that she was planning on having sex, her mother would convince her to wait until she was in a stable loving relationship, and she wouldn’t have sex until she was at least 18. Or the mother would take her daughter to the family doctor and get birth control. But many kids don’t have that kind of relationship with their parents and many parents don’t have insurance and can’t pay out of pocket.The clinic is funded by public money through Planned Parenthood.
The story about the clinic story ran on the LA Times website, but was quickly picked up by news organizations and blogs. As of 9 am, there were 998 comments on CBS Los Angeles and the LA Times had 249 comments to the original story. Some were frightening and racist, some said it wasn’t LAUSD’s place to give children drugs, and some were in favor of it.
But I’m wondering, what the Mothers in Los Angeles think about this partnership? What would you do if your son or daughter came home and said they received birth control or condoms after a visit to a clinic at their school?
Yvonne Condes is the Editor and co-Founder of MomsLA, a Community of the Top Mom Bloggers in Los Angeles.