Youth Activists Celebrate Successful Campaign for an Over-the-Counter Birth Control Pill

Advocates for Youth applauds the work of youth activists and a coalition of organizations who have worked for years to demonstrate the scientific support and the urgent need for an otc birth control pill. The FDA’s decision to make Opill available over the counter comes at a time of unprecedented attacks on young people’s health and rights at the federal level and in states across the country.  The science is clear, and the need has never been greater. 

“I’m thrilled the FDA followed the science and the unanimous decision of its Advisory Committee, and has authorized Opill for sale over-the-counter without age restrictions,” said Debra Hauser, President of Advocates for Youth. “Having an OTC option for birth control pills is incredibly important and long overdue. We know that the far right will continue to attack and limit access to reproductive health care, and we need to ensure young people have everything they need to lead healthy lives and plan their futures.”

Many on the FDA’s advisory panel cited how important it is for young people to be able to get contraception when and where they need it.

“This monumental moment of over-the-counter approval gives thousands of young people across the U.S. access to a vital piece of healthcare,” said Dyvia Huitron, a 19 year old organizer with Advocates for Youth who testified to the FDA in May. “I am so glad to know that I, and many others, can now take charge of our health and pick up birth control on our own terms and in our own time.” 

Last December, Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk ruled that Texas youth could no longer access birth control confidentially at Title X clinics. In response, Maia Lopez, a 17 year old in Texas wrote an op-ed in support of over-the-counter access for all ages, writing “Birth control shouldn’t be something that’s only available to people who live in certain states or whose parents happen to be open to it. It is essential health care that every single one of us deserves, no matter our age, race, income or life circumstance.”

Advocates for Youth will continue to work alongside youth activists to ensure everyone has access to birth control and to all the tools we need to protect our health and plan our futures.