Get Your Free Condoms on New Year's Eve!

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Cynde Cerf, director of communications and marketing at Planned Parenthood Arizona, sends along an op-ed reminding those who are going to get busy during the holiday season to remember to use protection. Planned Parenthood will be supplying free condoms on New Year's Eve for patrons at Hotel Congress, The Shanty and Pastiche.

The holidays are upon us—time with family and friends, parties, champagne, and, even romance. At this time of year there can be such an overwhelming feeling of joy and happiness that when you add twinkling lights on a tree and a sprig of mistletoe, who knows where the evening could go?

Campaigns about watching one’s alcohol consumption during the holidays are prevalent and serve as wonderful reminders to celebrate responsibly. But, when we are finding ourselves “in the mood” at this time of year, another way to celebrate responsibly is to use a condom when you have sex.

In the United States, about half of all pregnancies are unintended and each year there are 20 million new sexually transmitted infections (STIs). As the largest provider of sexual health care in Arizona, we want to remind everyone that if there is a chance you may have sex on New Year’s Eve, make sure you have a condom in your purse or wallet. The condom should be one of your most essential holiday accessories and that’s why we created the Party Prepared community health initiative.

To make it a little easier to access condoms, we have partnered with restaurants, bars and clubs in across Arizona, making 15,000 free condoms available on New Year’s Eve to communities. In Tucson, you can find free condoms at the following locations: Hotel Congress, Pastiche and The Shanty.

Condoms are not the only way to party prepared. Another way to make sure you are off to the best start in the New Year is to have emergency contraception on-hand. Condoms can break and sometimes, even with the best of intentions, they can be forgotten. If you need a primer on how to put a condom on correctly, we have you covered. Go to ppaz.org for more information and answers to questions you may have, as well as a full list of locations participating in this year’s campaign.

We wish everyone a safe and happy New Year’s Eve filled with fun, music, good food, flirting and romance. Here is to a healthy 2015!

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