If you have ever experienced being unable to access tampons in high school and then resorting to asking fellow students for help, you’ll understand the merit in the Victorian Labor Government’s plan to solve the problem.
If re-elected, the Andrews Government has promised to give Victorian students in public school access to free tampons and pads.
It’s a particularly interesting promise when you consider the fact the majority of the beneficiaries of such a move are unlikely to be able to vote.
The policy was announced by Minister for Health Jill Hennessy in the lead up to the state election on the 24th November. She said that young women and girls at school shouldn’t have to worry about basic necessities like sanitary products.
In making the announcement, the Labor Government said it’s aiming to help ease the “inconvenience, frustration and embarrassment” that can occur when female students get their period at school, despite periods being a normal part of life.
It noted that the need to find a tampon or pad can cause unnecessary additional stress on students, and may see them delaying changing them or missing sport or other activities.
According to the release, the Department of Education and Training will work with schools in order to determine the best means for dispensing the items.
“We want to break down the stigma of menstruation and ensure it does not impact on a student’s ability to be comfortable at school and ready to learn,” said Hennessy.
“This is about giving female students the dignity they deserve, and helping families with the cost of living along the way.”
The products would be available from term three of 2019.
This latest announcement follows state and territory treasurers voting to remove GST from pads and tampons last month.