SRJ Members standing outside Mundelein Center for the Fine and Performing Arts during a passing period to distribute condoms for Free Condom Friday. | Credit: SRJ

At 5 p.m. on Wednesday evening a pair of students review orders and map out their route for the night. After carefully picking the items requested, the duo head out onto Loyola’s Lake Shore Campus, into the Rogers Park neighborhood.

They drop off packages at several stops for fellow students whose identities are anonymous – some in need of condoms, others a pregnancy test. These items are provided no questions asked and at no student cost under an initiative inspired by the original Jane Collective.

TxtJane is one of several services offered by Students for Reproductive Justice (SRJ), a small group of Loyola University students, which aims to provide their community with reproductive and sexual health resources. Through TxtJane, the organization offers free, confidential delivery within a mile radius of campus, including external and internal condoms, lube, dental dams, menstrual cups, and pregnancy tests. 

“We like to call it a DoorDash for safer sex products,” said recently graduated former SRJ Organizer Abby VanHaitsma.

SRJ asks students to request items they need through their Google Form, provide contact information and a preferred delivery time. Members take shifts in pairs to distribute products for the night, scheduling drop offs every Wednesday of the semester from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.  

“Since COVID, we’ve been doing contact free delivery,” explained VanHaitsma. “So we’ll leave it like in the lobby, or outside the gate and send a picture of where it is.”

According to VanHaitsma the average number of orders can range between five to 15 every week. Condoms are their most commonly requested item, followed by pregnancy tests.

“If we weren’t around students would not have free access to these products, which is ridiculous because if you go to any public university, you can go to their wellness center and get condoms for free. But you can’t do that here,” VanHaitsma said.

Although SRJ is run by students, they do not have registered student organization (RSO) status, meaning they do not receive funding from the school. 

“Basically we exist because Loyola is a Jesuit-Catholic university and for that reason, we have identified certain services and products and advocacy issues that the university does not provide students. So that’s kind of what SRJ does, is kind of supplement what we believe the university should be providing…,” said VanHaitsma.

“The biggest hurdle is definitely working around the administration because we don’t get any funding from them. And we can’t hold events on campus. We lose a lot of our own traction in terms of stability. And we also lose access to all things that we could be doing for the community, but can’t,” explained SRJ Organizer Ella Hansen.

Per the school’s “no solicitation” policy found on page 13 of the Loyola Community Standards, the group also cannot operate on campus grounds. 

“People can come to us and ask for things but we can’t be on campus proper and say, ‘Hey, we have these things. Do you want that?’ It gets kind of tricky,” explained VanHaitsma.

“They [Loyola] support moreso our pro-life organization. They’re allowed to function out of the university and we have to function outside of the university,” Hansen said.

Students for Reproductive Justice members standing directly off campus property. | Credit: SRJ

To subsidize their operation costs SRJ hosts spring and fall fundraisers, with support from initiatives like The Condom Collective (formerly Great American Condom Campaign) who supplies products. Despite the challenges they face, their impact is felt. According to the SRJ website, they have provided over 30,000 free external condoms and other products to the Loyola community.

At the time of publication, SRJ currently has six active members. Hansen will lead the EZ EC service this upcoming fall semester and she feels hopeful for their impact to come.

“We have support from our student population, and we have support from our city and our local community. There aren’t many people who are against what we’re working for.”