FREE PERIODS in ALL Ontario public schools

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One in seven young women and non-binary people in Canada will be forced to miss school because they do not have access to menstrual hygiene products.

Menstrual products cost Canadian women anywhere from $76 to $103 annually, and up to $6500 in their lifetime. For the low-income, marginalized and homeless, this cost can be the difference between eating and acquiring essential supplies. As a matter of fact, one in three Canadian menstruators under the age of 25 have struggled to pay for menstrual hygiene products.

On average, a girl in Canada gets her first period between the ages of 11 and 14. Girls who do not have access to menstrual supplies are reusing or overusing pads and tampons which can increase the risk for reproductive tract infections. 

Having a uterus should not make you a victim of gender-based poverty. Studies have shown that 70% of women have missed school or work because of their menstruation, elucidating the devastating realities of period poverty. Periods are not a choice. Menstrual hygiene products are fundamental necessities that must be made accessible to everyone. By implementing a government policy to provide free menstrual products in Ontario public elementary and high schools, we are taking the first step towards menstrual equity.

If we don’t have to pay for toilet paper, soap and water, why do we have to pay for feminine hygiene products if they're equally as necessary? Provide free menstrual hygiene products in Ontario public schools not just because they are expensive, but because they are essential. 

Let’s change the conversation on menstrual equity.