Today, Vice President Kamala Harris met with officials from 68 colleges and universities in 32 states to discuss ongoing efforts to protect access to contraception for college students. During the Department of Education’s convening on access to contraception for college students, the Vice President joined Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona, Director of the White House Gender Policy Council Jen Klein, and Deputy Assistant Secretary for Postsecondary Education Amanda Miller in speaking with leaders from a diverse range of institutions including Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Hispanic-Serving Institutions, community colleges, and four-year public schools. University leaders spoke about strides they are making in protecting and expanding access to contraception for their students and shared strategies that have been successful in improving access on campus.
On her recent nationwide “Fight for Our Freedoms College Tour,” the Vice President heard from young leaders across the country about the issues that are most important to them – reproductive freedom was often at the top of that list. During today’s convening, Vice President Harris made it clear that contraception is health care and that every person in America should have the right to access the health care they need. Speaking about extremists’ full-on attack on reproductive freedom in the year since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, she noted that protecting access to contraception has become more important than ever. The Vice President also thanked educators for the unique role they play in protecting access to reproductive health care, and urged them to test, implement, and share the strategies discussed during today’s convening so that their campuses can serve as models for other schools throughout the country.
The Vice President has consistently led the fight to protect the freedom of women to make decisions about their own bodies. She and President Biden have championed three Executive Orders on access to reproductive health care, including a June 2023 Executive Order on strengthening access to affordable, high-quality contraception and family planning services. Additionally, she spoke at a 2022 meeting of the Task Force on Reproductive Healthcare Access where she called for protecting access to contraception. Today’s convening also follows a series of meetings about reproductive rights that Vice President Harris has held with students and young leaders in every part of the nation.
Featured panelists included:
- Dr. Aminta H. Breaux, President, Bowie State University (MD)
- Brad Carson, President, University of Tulsa (OK)
- Dr. Angélica Garcia, President/Superintendent, Santa Rosa Junior College (CA)
- Dr. Keith Whitfield, President, University of Nevada – Las Vegas (NV)
- Dr. Marina Catallozzi, Vice President of Health and Wellness and Chief Health Officer, Barnard College (NY)
- Dr. Kathryn Kay Coquemont, Vice President for Student Affairs, Macalester College (MN)
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