26 September 2023

Period relief for State school students

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The Department of Education has announced that students at all State Government secondary schools are soon to have access to free menstrual period products.

More than 220 public schools will be provided with the products from next year, with the initiative to be rolled out from Term One.

Minister for Education and Training, Sue Ellery said period products were a fundamental health necessity, but the cost and the stigma associated with them meant many students did not have access to the items they needed while at school.

“The 2021 Bloody Big Survey found almost half of the 125,000 respondents missed a class due to their period, and three quarters said when they did attend school during their period they found it difficult to pay attention,” Ms Ellery said.

“Evidence shows improving access to tampons and pads keeps students engaged in education, improves public health outcomes, and helps them reach their full potential.”

She said young people were dealing with a range of issues during their high school years “and we don’t want them to miss opportunities that are crucial to their growth”.

“This program will give young women some comfort by ensuring they have access to free sanitary products when they need them,” the Minister said.

She said a procurement process would soon get under way for provision of the free period products for students in Years 7 to 12 in public secondary schools across the State.

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