We often take for granted how easy it is to get our hands on tampons every time we menstruate. But there are many young women around the world—even in our own country—who can’t afford tampons or pads when they’re on their period.
In many cases, this means they have to miss school, which leaves them further behind in their education than other more fortunate girls who have easy access to menstrual hygiene products.
The Liberal Democrat party in the UK is starting an initiative that will hopefully change this reality for many girls around the country. Lorely Burt, the Lib Dem spokesperson for equalities, announced that it was “disgraceful” that there were so many girls having to miss school because they didn’t have the right tools to take care of their period.
That’s why this initiative will provide funding for schools to have a large amount of sanitary products, like pads and tampons, stored at school for girls to take as they please.
Last year the New York City Council sparked the same initiative. They voted unanimously to provide pads and tampons to menstruating students in public schools, free of charge. They also decided to provide menstrual hygiene products to prisons and homeless shelters, because everyone deserves the chance to take care of their periods in a healthy, dignified way.
Hopefully we’ll see a lot more initiatives like this pop up around the world. It would be great for the U.S. to mandate free tampons in all its public schools. Call up your local representative and tell them!