The New Westminster School Board has officially voted to provide free pads and tampons in all school bathrooms.
The motion passed yesterday and was spearheaded by Vancouver professor Dr. Selina Tribe.
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After pushing for a coin-free pad and tampon dispenser to be installed at her daughter’s school in Vancouver, Tribe made it her mission to have other Metro Vancouver schools follow suit.
“I want this for every school and I am starting with the schools because I have the precedent of putting [a machine] at a school,” Tribe said, in a previous interview with Daily Hive.
“This is where girls start their period because they are usually school age. The silence is deafening at the schools about how to deal with this.”
New Westminster is now the first and only school district in BC to fund free pad and tampon dispensers in all schools.
New Westminster school trustees also voted to endorse the Period Promise campaign by the United Way of the Lower Mainland. The campaign runs from March 7 to April 4 and encourages people to donate menstrual products, organize a collection drive, or commit to provide cost-free pads and tampons in their facilities. Tribe is also working with the United Way on this project.
“Period products are no different than toilet paper, and just as essential,” said Selina Tribe, in a statement, “This decision acknowledges the reality of menstruation and reduces the stigma.”
New Westminster school trustees are now working to take the issue province-wide and will speak with the BC School Trustees Associate (BCSTA) to request the Ministry of Education and Ministry of Finance to fund all BC school districts and to purchase, install, and supply coin-free tampon and pad dispensers in every BC school.