One Alaska lawmaker thinks he has the perfect plan to get rid of fetal alcohol syndrome in his state, and it involves giving women pregnancy tests in bars.
Republican State Sen. Pete Kelly says that regular birth control may not be enough, especially when pregnant women decide to drink.
“If you have people who are binge drinking or chronic drinkers, we’re hesitant to say ‘use birth control as your protection against fetal alcohol syndrome,’ because again, as I say, binge drinking is a problem,” he said. “If you think you can take birth control and then binge drink and hope not to produce a fetal alcohol syndrome baby, you may be very wrong. Sometimes these things don’t work. Sometimes people forget. Sometimes they administer birth control improperly, and you might produce a fetal alcohol syndrome baby.”
In an interview with the Anchorage Daily News last week, Kelly said his push for state-funded pregnancy tests in bars is fueled by his belief that “if you know you’re pregnant, you won’t drink.”
To hear Kelly describe it, giving yourself a pregnancy test before placing your drink order wouldn’t be awkward at all.
“You grab one. Literally, you can go into the bathroom at the bar and test,” he said. “So if you’re drinking, you’re out at the big birthday celebration and you’re like, ‘Gee, I wonder if I …?’