New research carried out by City Hall concludes that 17 per cent of females aged 16-24 in London alone experience period poverty. Period poverty is when a girl or woman is not able to afford menstrual products each month. It can lead to women and girls missing school, university and work. It also doesn’t allow them to completely engage in sports or education.
Amika Green, 18, set up the #freeperiods movement after reading about about school girls in the UK without access to sanitary items. She has previously shared her frustration with the government failing to do anything about it.
Amika started her campaign one year ago and has since called on The Labour Party, The Liberal Democrats and The Green Party for help. They have all pledged to address period poverty. The campaign asks that girls receiving free meals at school are granted free sanitary products, and has gathered over 83,000 signatures so far.
Over 2000 protested with Amika for the #freeperiods movement last December to show their support. Following this, on March 26th 2018 the government gave £1.5 million to address UK period poverty.
The new statistics were released by City Hall today on World Menstrual Hygiene Day. London Mayor Sadiq Khan after, announced he would be joining forces with The Red Box Project to supply sanitary items to local schools. It stocks schools with menstrual products donated through red collection boxes in local business and organisations willing to help.
This is a great step in the right direction. Amika wants periods to be a more open topic of conversation and for the taboos around periods to stop. Her way of doing this is for women to talk about periods as much as they can. She says: “Donating to organisations such as ‘Bloody Good Period’ and ‘Red Box’ can be a massive help.”
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