Betting On Safe Sex

Hundreds of SUNY New Paltz students flooded the Student Union Multipurpose Room on Tuesday, Nov. 29 for Residence Hall Student Association’s (RHSA) Condom Casino night.  A night of music, food and gambling to promote safe sex.

Condoms were used as chips to compete in favorite casino and non-casino games, such as blackjack, roulette, condom pong and Apples to Apples, which were among the most heavily populated tables.

“Condom Casino night is something I look forward to every year, it’s a lot of fun so I volunteer,” third-year organizational communications Sarah Sobel said.

RHSA President Ranysha Ware wrote the rules for many of the games played during the night and said it is her favorite event to plan for RHSA.

“It is a good program, students want to come because it is a great way to meet new people and it is educational even for those who are not having sex,” Ware said.  “I have never used any of the condoms I have received from Condom Casino night but I still go and students should feel open to coming too.”

New York State Condoms supplied RHSA with the boxes of free condoms.  This year’s event was larger than last year’s with an estimated 700 attendees, while  600 students participated last year.

Oasis/Haven, the student staffed crisis intervention center and hotline, tabled at Condom Casino night and helped distribute information about safe sex.  Coordinator Nicole “Gigi” Giordano has volunteered at previous Condom Casino events and this year she handed out information about STI’s, birth control and safe sex in general.

“I think that having free safe sex tools for students is important,” Giordano said. “It is a good way to bring students out and keep them involved.”