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Isle of Wight Liberal Democrats

How we're going to end period poverty in Wales

March 27, 2018 7:00 PM
Originally published by UK Liberal Democrats

Kirsty Williams speaks at Welsh Lib Dem conference.

'Period poverty' - it's a phrase that only a couple of years ago barely even existed.

Yet, that all changed last March when the media reported of girls in Leeds who had routinely been missing school because they couldn't afford menstrual products.

People's reaction was, understandably, a mix of shock and disbelief. How on earth have we reached a point, in this day and age, where young people are having to miss out on education because they can't afford essential sanitary products?

A survey by Plan International UK found that 1 in 10 girls had been unable to afford sanitary products.

Following these reports, a survey by Plan International UK found that 1 in 10 girls had been unable to afford sanitary products.

While the term may not have existed few years ago, it seems unlikely that the problem is a new one - it has simply been hidden.

The stigma and shame that often shrouds menstruation has meant girls are left to improvise alone every month, sometimes missing out on their studies.

I have been proud to see Liberal Democrats across the UK lead the campaign on this issue.

As Wales' Education Secretary, I have been determined that we in Wales take action on this. Working with Ministerial colleagues, we have recently announced extra funding to be used to help address period poverty in our communities.

I have been proud to see Liberal Democrats across the UK lead the campaign on this issue.

This funding will support local authorities in providing female hygiene products to those most in need.

We are also providing capital funding to support the improvement of facilities and equipment in schools, ensuring that all girls and young women can access good sanitary facilities when they need them.

This is just our first step in creating a national, sustainable response to period poverty.

This is just our first step in creating a national, sustainable response to period poverty.

We want all our young people to reach their full potential both inside and outside the classroom and this funding will help to ensure they feel properly supported.