XES – We Can’t Go Backwards will take centre stage during Sexual Health Week from Monday 16 to Sunday 22 September.
The major awareness campaign by Brook and FPA, the UK’s leading sexual health charities, was launched during the same event last year and focus remains on a need for immediate action to stop the worrying erosion of contraceptive rights and choice in the UK.
The charities are renewing their call on people to join the campaign and rate and share their experiences of contraceptive services – good and bad – through the UK’s only interactive online sexual health map.
So far, thousands have people have visited the site, with many leaving their stories. The charities have also produced a campaign pack to help health professionals get involved.
Brook’s CEO, Simon Blake OBE, said:
“Due to a mix of funding cuts, changes to policy, and aggressive opposition, many of the hard-fought for contraceptive rights and choices we have come to take for granted are in danger of being eroded.
“We also know, through our Unprotected Nation report, the economic effects and that increased provision of sexual health services actually saves money, as well as the benefits to people’s health and wellbeing.
“Since the XES – We Can’t Go Backwards campaign was launched last year, we have had a range stories on the campaign’s interactive map. Many people have told us about the difficulties they have faced in accessing contraception, that they were made to feel uncomfortable by staff, or that they did not feel listened to when it came to making the right choices for them. We have also been told about great experiences, with easy access to services and friendly, understanding staff.”
FPA’s Acting CEO, Audrey Simpson OBE, added:
“It’s important for us to know what people across the UK face on a daily basis, and as we focus again on this campaign during Sexual Health Week 2013, I would urge everyone who has had an experience of visiting a sexual health or contraception clinic to tell us about it.
“Control over our fertility, safety from sexually transmitted infections and access to good quality, unbiased information and support is all vital and helps us maintain safe, happy relationships.”