October 6, 2015

CSURGE promotes sex education

By Becky Byron

Cleveland State Unite for Gender and Reproductive Equity (CSURGE) — a new organization at Cleveland State — has begun holding bi-weekly meetings this semester.

Vice President Nicole Zollos said in an email interview that reproductive equity occurs when all people have social, political and economic power and resources to make decisions about gender, bodies, sexuality and families for themselves.

She explained the mission of CSURGE is “to provide information for the public, provide a platform to speak to our state and legislative representatives about the issues we care about, and to help empower those marginalized by current sexual and reproductive policy to become an active part in catalyzing change.”

CSURGE President Marissa Pappas and Zollos started the organization after hearing a presentation from a national URGE coordinator in a women’s studies class during the spring 2015 semester.

“[Marissa] reached out to me, and together we worked really hard to bring CSURGE to life for this year,” Zollos said. “CSU doesn’t really have anything for reproductive justice, sex education, sexual assault prevention, etc., so we felt we could fit that void and help make that change.”

“Recent false video allegations attacking Planned Parenthood have shot the Anti-Choice campaign into the front seat of politics right now," Zollos said. "Although the allegations are unfounded, and the videos proven doctored, a lot of Americans have bought into the Anti-Choice voice.

CSURGE is encouraging students to take a stand on the recent controversy regarding the funding of Planned Parenthood.

"In response, we encourage everyone to fact check during these debates and campaigns," she continued. "Taking medical knowledge from politicians at face value will only confuse and mislead the public. As a group, we lobby around these issues.”

CSURGE is working on a plan for a Sex Positive Festival that will take place near the end of the month. The festival will include free condoms, a sex toy raffle, books, info packets and games.

The organization meets every other Tuesday during common hour and encourages interested students to connect with its members via its Facebook page (CSURGE), Instagram and Twitter (CS_URGE).

For more information about reproductive and gender rights, CSURGE encourages students to visit URGE.org.


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