More affordable menstrual products are on the docket for the government’s 2022 federal budget.
After six months since the Liberals pledged to create a menstrual equity fund, they introduced a new, national pilot project that aims to make menstrual products more accessible to Canadians.
Women and Gender Equality Canada will receive $25 million over the next two years from the government to establish the menstrual equity fund.
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“Access to menstrual products is a basic necessity, but current barriers make it difficult for some women, girls, trans, and non-binary Canadians to fully participate in school, work, and society,” reads the budget.
The mandate letter tasked Women and Gender Equality Minister Marci Ien with creating a fund for non-profits and shelters to make products free for “vulnerable women.”
Based on their 2021 re-election platform, the Liberals also committed to provide free tampons and pads in federally regulated workplaces.
This fund could also mean the government will finally make good on a promise they made last year to make menstrual products free in all on-reserve schools.
Period poverty should never be a barrier to going to school. End of story. Menstrual products are a basic need, and very soon they will be freely available in all on-reserve schools.
— Patty Hajdu (@PattyHajdu) November 5, 2021
Many Canadians are happy to see this included in the 2022 budget.
“Working my way through the budget and I am very happy to see pilot funding for a menstrual equity fund! And happy to see efforts to use more accurate and inclusive language,” said one Twitter user.
Working my way through the budget and I am very happy to see pilot funding for a menstrual equity fund!
And happy to see efforts to use more accurate and inclusive language. pic.twitter.com/Di1bxsoSgM
— Fae Johnstone, MSW (@FaeJohnstone) April 8, 2022
Another says the pandemic has highlighted the need for more accessible menstrual products.
“The need for equitable access to products have grown through the pandemic and it’s time to address them now,” they said.
Pleased to see the work of menstrual equity advocates across the country reflected in #Budget2022 with the Menstrual Equity Fund. The need for equitable access to products have grown through the pandemic and it’s time to address them now. #periodpoverty #cdnpoli #PeriodPromise pic.twitter.com/GJ1d67Ulff
— Nikki Hill (@HillNikki) April 7, 2022
Some institutions have already taken it upon themselves to make products more accessible. In March, the University of Toronto launched a pilot project offering free menstrual products on the St. George campus.