Pro-life group proposes supporting pregnant students rather than offering them abortions

Pro-life students at Troy University are organizing an initiative to provide free support services for pregnant students, contrasting their effort with the abortion services demanded by students at other universities.

Troy’s Students for Life chapter, which was established in 2014, is sponsoring the “Pregnant on Campus” (PoC) Initiative in part through a $500 grant they received after winning the 2015 New Group of the Year Award from the national SFL organization. With outside fundraising and help from school officials, they are hoping to provide free daycare services and other assistance to pregnant and parenting students.

The chapter’s founder, Courtney Brown, told Campus Reform she began laying the groundwork for the Initiative in 2015, after noticing that she had only seen two pregnant women on campus out of a student population of more than 29,000, and presumed that others must either be dropping out of school or procuring abortions.

(Full disclosure: Brown is currently employed by the Leadership Institute, Campus Reform’s parent organization.)

Brown met with university administrators in the spring of 2015 to discuss the possibility of utilizing vacant rooms reserved for married couples and single parents to provide daycare, lactation rooms, and maternal and infant necessities, and while she said they were generally supportive of the idea, they first wanted to see a petition from students in need of such services.

Her successor, Jacob Holmes, developed the proposal further to include specific details and submitted it to the university earlier this month. The group is still awaiting an official response, but attributes the delay to procedural inertia rather than any resistance to their efforts on the school’s part.

In fact, Brown told Campus Reform that the students were even given a verbal offer to use a separate university-owned house for overflow in the event that the rooms they are requesting cannot handle demand.

SFL plans to cover all associated costs, including utilities, through private donations, and will staff the daycare center with volunteers who have gone through the university’s background check process.

“As a direct response to what is happening on UC-Berkeley’s campus, we know that forcing [administrators]—and taxpayers—to pay for abortion on demand is not the answer to crisis pregnancy on college campuses,” Brown said, referring to a student government resolution calling for on-campus abortion services at Berkeley, the sponsor of which suggested that it be financed by cutting administrative salaries.

[RELATED: UC Berkeley student senate demands free, on-campus abortions]

“Pregnant students shouldn't have to choose between their education and their child,” Brown asserted. “That's why we are working with the university to provide free resources to pregnant and parenting students—through generous philanthropy, not forced charity.”

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