For Immediate Release, June 1, 2015
Contact: Stephanie Feldstein, (734) 395-0770, firstname.lastname@example.org
12,000 Endangered Species Condoms Sent to Venezuela to Alleviate Shortage
TUCSON, Ariz.— More than 12,000 free condoms are being delivered to health clinics in Venezuela to help alleviate the condom shortage caused by import restrictions. The condoms are being donated by the Center for Biological Diversity’s Endangered Species Condoms project.
|Art by Shawn DiCriscio. Package design by Lori Lieber. Images are available for media use.
“The condom shortage may have started as an economic policy issue, but when contraception is unavailable, it becomes a threat to public health, reproductive rights, families and biodiversity,” said Stephanie Feldstein, population and sustainability director at the Center. “While 12,000 condoms won’t be able to meet the country’s need, we hope it will help draw attention to the urgency of the situation in Venezuela.”
In February media outlets around the world reported that condoms and other forms of contraception had become increasingly difficult to find, leading to boxes of condoms being sold online for as much as $755 U.S. dollars. Amid concerns about the public health risks posed by the lack of contraceptives, the health ministry announced it would distribute free condoms; however, import restrictions continue to create an urgent need for condoms.
Barbara Lee, an advocate of healthy sexual education and author of Sacred Sex, reached out to the Center after reading reports about the crisis. Lee helped raise money to ship the condoms and connected the organization with Venezuelan health advocate Dr. Fernando Bianco of the Psiquiatría Clínica Asociación Civil (Civil Association of Clinical Psychiatry) to distribute the condoms to local health and family planning clinics in need.
“Our foundation wants to express its word of recognition and appreciation for the donation of such a large amount of condoms for free distribution in our sex clinics and family-planning facilities here in Venezuela,” said Dr. Bianco. “We are in a desperate predicament now due to the deficit of birth control in our country, and we deeply appreciate this initiative and intervention.”
The Endangered Species Condoms project is part of the Center’s Population and Sustainability program, which highlights the connections between unsustainable human population growth, overconsumption, and the wildlife extinction crisis — as well as promoting a range of solutions, including universal access to birth control and family planning and education and empowerment of women and girls.
The Endangered Species Condoms come in colorful packages featuring six different endangered species and information to help start the conversation about the impact of runaway human population growth on imperiled wildlife. The Center has given away more than 650,000 free Endangered Species Condoms since 2009.
To learn more about the Endangered Species Condoms project, visit www.EndangeredSpeciesCondoms.com.
The Center for Biological Diversity is a U.S.-based nonprofit conservation organization with more than 825,000 members and online activists dedicated to the protection of endangered species and wild places.