As today’s prompt is Red; I thought I’d mention the Free Period protest that’s happening tomorrow. It’s part of the campaign to give girls from low income families, free sanitary products. It’s in Parliament Square London if you want to go and can make it, from 5 – 8 pm, and you should wear RED.
I will paste the details from the FREE PERIODS website below:
1 in 10 girls can’t afford to buy menstrual products according to Plan International UK.
49% of girls have missed a full day of school because of their period.
68% said they felt less able to pay attention in class at school or college while menstruating.
A survey of more than 1,000 girls found nearly half were embarrassed by their period and many were afraid to ask for help because of the stigma.
Menstrual products cost more than £18,000, in a women’s life (£13 every month).
In the UK, 208K girls are eligible for and claim free school meals.
The approximate cost of giving all of these girls sanitary care would be £4.78m. This is based on the assumption that the average woman/girl uses up between 4 and 5 products for each day they menstruate, and that each girl has 68 menstruating days per year.
While this may sound like a lot of money, the Ministry of Defence’s budget for trident in 2016/17 was an estimated £35 billion! This proves how small the demand that we are putting on the UK government really is.
We also believe that as well as changing the policy on periods, we need to normalise the conversation surrounding periods, and end the silence and stigma that is stuck to periods. Half of the world’s population bleeds every month, so why are we too embarrassed to talk about this very normal, natural process?
Lets get talking. Regardless of how gross, disgusting or graphic,
Tell EVERYONE you know – friends, parents, siblings, teachers, postman – about your period.
We need to smash the taboo around menstruation and this can only be done by expelling any embarrassment or shame, and talking about periods. No matter how bloody.
What a great campaign set up by Amika George, a teenager who wants to see change, and it’s about bloody time. I’m lucky enough to have had a dad who would happily go and buy my tampons when my period pain was too much to stand up straight. I’d get a supermarket bag containing tampons, painkillers, chocolate, and a magazine; he never made my time of the month feel embarrassing or shameful. My husband is much the same; he understands that marrying a female with ovaries and a vagina means dealing with periods. I mean, they’re awful enough; I can’t imagine what it must be like to fashion your own sanitary products and feel too embarrassed to discuss them or ask for help.
So, here’s my little contribution towards normalising the conversation about blood leaving our vaginas on a bloody monthly cycle. Periods shouldn’t make your cheeks red from blushing; they leave a red stain on enough already.
You can use the hashtags #FreePeriods and #PeriodPoverty and start talking openly about that time of the month, whether you’re male or female.
Peace, love, and painless periods, Fay x