Written by Ashley Neyra
Montgomery College focuses and prides itself on providing support to all students. This is why it was amazing when the Student Health and Wellness (SHaW) Center at the Rockville campus held a small fair to advocate what they have to offer.
However, in this case also included their two-year expired condoms.
The SHaW center fair was held on March 28th inside the SV (LongNguyenandKimmy Duong Student Services Center) Building. They had set up several different activities and goodie bags. Providing students with items like Lip balms, Mirrors, Pads, Tampons, and condoms. After further investigation, some of the condoms given to students had expired in January of 2021. The condoms that were from the Brand “One” were the ones we found to be expired.
After noticing the expired condom inside the goodie bag, other bags were examined. However, a second bag also had expired condoms. When bringing it to the attention of the staff at the table, they held on to it and that was about it.
Expired condoms can be dangerous to use since they are more prone to breaking. Resulting in unwanted pregnancies and possible STIs, STDs,s and HIV. Any student who received a goodie bag from the SHaW center on March 28th should check the expiration date on their condoms before using them to practice safe sex.
Update from April 4th :
The SHaW center made a recall notice 6 days after the event had happened with a post on their Instagram account. Previously, The Globe had written about the incident 4 days ago but within that time we were in contact with Angela Dawson. Up to this point, we were unable to set up a proper meeting for additional questions about the situation. Although we have been contacted through our Instagram via comment and they have connected me personally through emails.
On March 30th, 2023 The Globe posted the original article above in which The SHaW center commented the following: “I appreciate you bringing this our attention at the SHaW Center open house. What is not reported regarding the expired condoms is that once this was brought to our attention, we addressed this with the supplier through the County Health Department. Apparently, they did not realize they sent us a case of expired condoms. We had not previously checked the dates as we would assume they would not be expired. They have since replaced this case with condoms that are not expired. We can’t replace the expired condoms already distributed BUT we encourage you to advise those who received the bags to CHECK the expiration dates on them. If they are expired, to trash them and to come to get condoms that are not expired. Please ensure you convey that in an edition that you run on the story. We JUST began condom distribution this past month to ensure the safer sex practices of our students. We are concerned about the health and wellness of MC students.”
The situation was addressed to the higher-ups but not the student body ( Until yesterday April 3rd, 6 days after the event). A mass email by Angela Dawson was never sent out to other students for those who do not follow the SHaW Center on Instagram or other social media platforms. The students of Montgomery College do not deserve an assumption about something so important and delicate as this. When it comes to preventing something that can be possibly life-altering if not careful. Not only is the County Health Department of health at fault but the personnel at Montgomery College for being careless and not checking the product themselves which easily could have been avoidable. As we do appreciate the efforts and want nothing more than for the community to practice safer sex and stop the spread of HIV, STI and AID’s, This was a careless mistake on behalf of the SHaW center.
Within the emails, the SHaW center explained how this was their second round of condoms since they have only done 2 distributions in February and March of 2023. Leaving us with questions if there is a possibility that it happened last month as well.
The perception of the original article was not to undermine the work of the SHaW Center but to speak about an event that happened at the event.
Through further communication via email they stated “We may give food that has expired in our pantry by mistake, and it happens. That doesn’t mean we do not care in how we address that or the issue of food insecurity. Expired products can be given out but when we realize it happens, we have the good sense to address it accordingly.”
Students have never received an email or seen a recall for them on social media about expired food and having that be addressed.
It is one mistake to have expired food, the worst case scenario being a bad stomach ache for a few days; But when it comes to something like condoms, it only takes one mistake to be a life-altering situation.