Free Sanitary Products in Ireland - End Period Poverty

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For homeless women and trans men (or anyone who menstruates) in Ireland, their period truly is that dreaded time of the month. With limited or no access to sanitary products, they're often forced to go without. This combined with their inability to find a steady and comfortable place to shower, means that homeless people with a uterus are forced to live in dreadful conditions during the course of their periods.

Scotland recently became the first country in the world to begin providing sanitary products for free. Schools in Scotland are now legally obligated to hand them out for free and some colleges are even putting vending machines with pads and tampons in place.

Nothing of this nature currently exists in Ireland. The cost of a period is also greatly impacting the lives of low socio-economic groups. Many of us are lucky enough to be able to buy these products every month without the worry of having enough left over to feed the mouths of our children.

This is not only a matter of cleanliness and hygiene, but also a matter of dignity. 

Toilet paper is given out for free in almost every establishment nationwide. You wouldn't be expected to keep your own roll of toilet paper in your handbag when you go out to a nightclub, a restaurant or the cinema. It's always provided for you. This is because it is considered a necessity, it would be morally wrong and unhygienic not to provide it, free of charge. This is the exact same thing when it comes to menstruation. It is not a choice.

Some form of action needs to be taken to protect those of us who menstruate who cannot afford the pricey products that are needed during a period. If we make enough noise, our TDs will have to listen. Change is possible and your signature could make the difference.

I ask you to sign this petition. Especially if you are somebody who knows what having a period feels like. Imagine if it were you, cold and hungry, out sleeping in the rain while on your period without any menstruation products. What if you had to go without? 

It's inhumane and it needs to be stopped.

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