Free sanitary products plan extended to primary girls

Free sanitary products will be offered to girls in all primary schools in England from early 2020. It follows Chancellor Philip Hammond’s announcement last month of funding for free sanitary products in secondary schools and colleges. The BBC reports.

Amika George, founder of the #FreePeriods campaign, called the latest move “fantastic news”.

When Mr Hammond made the original announcement in his Spring Statement last month campaigners argued that it should also include primary schools.

“We’re so glad that the government has extended this pledge to primary schools,” said Ms George, 19, a student at Cambridge University.

“Period poverty should never be a barrier to education.”

She said it meant that every student could go to school without “worrying where their next pad or tampon will come from” and could “fully participate in lessons and focus in class”.

The campaign began with a petition and a protest outside Downing Street and this year Ms George helped spearhead a legal campaign, in conjunction with the Red Box Project and The Pink Protest.

Girlguiding says its own research has suggested almost a third of 11 to 21-year-old girls and young women have missed school or college because of their period.

Isla, also 19, and a member of Girlguiding’s panel of advocates, called the figures “unacceptable”, adding that “giving primary school girls access to tampons and pads will help break the taboo of periods from a young age”.

Read more Free sanitary products plan extended to primary girls

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