Schools urged to apply for free period products
Schools and colleges in Hackney are being urged to apply for a Government scheme so they can provide free period products to students who may otherwise be unable to afford them.
Between one in 10 girls between the age of 14 and 21 in the UK are unable to afford menstrual products, while 49% have missed an entire day of school because of their period.
The Government announced its free scheme, which is available to both state-funded primary and secondary schools, and colleges, following a campaign from Red Box and schools in Hackney.
The Council now wants to ensure that every eligible institution in Hackney is applying for the scheme and has written to all headteachers in the borough.
The Government’s announcement to fund free period products was long overdue, and is something I have long called for in partnership with Hackney schools and the Red Box campaign.
We know that period poverty prevents far too many students from accessing education, and I hope that by encouraging all schools and colleges in Hackney to access the Government’s scheme, we can tackle both the causes and the stigma surrounding period poverty.
We know from our work with more than 50 schools and colleges across Hackney that there is a huge need for free period products amongst young people in our community. Our project has now closed to make way for the new Government scheme, and so we hope that Hackney will lead the way in taking advantage of this funding. We wish for every young person in our borough to experience the comfort, assurance and dignity that comes from having free access to these essential products at their place of learning. No young person should have to miss out on their education because they have their period.
Read the Mayor’s letter to Hackney schools.
Schools can apply for the scheme here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/period-products-in-schools-and-colleges/period-product-scheme-for-schools-and-colleges-in-england