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Providing free condoms to some Bay Area teens has some concerned about the message such a policy sends.
Teenagers in several California counties can now get condoms in the mail for free under a new program supported by state public health officials.
The Condom Access Project — launched on Tuesday — aims to reduce teenage pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases. It is available to youth between the ages of 12 and 19 in Kern, Alameda, Sacramento and San Joaquin counties and parts of San Francisco.
Teens can order a package of 10 condoms, lube and health brochures online at TeenSource.org, a website run by the nonprofit California Family Health Council. The package will then be mailed to them in a nondescript envelope.
Supporters say the program will benefit teens who cannot afford to buy condoms or are too embarrassed to go to clinics.
Critics tell the Bakersfield Californian it could be perceived as tacit approval of teenage sex.