Councillor Jayne Dunn put forward a motion to Sheffield City Council to stop the stigma against the menopause and period poverty.

The motion asks the council to provide free period products in public buildings and schools.

Councillor Julie Grocutt seconded this motion when it was first brought forward. She said: “If the government is really serious about ending period poverty and making sure that we are period poverty free by 2025, they need to do so much more. 

“6% of parents said that they are so desperate to supply their daughters with period products, they resort to stealing. ⅕ of parents say they have gone without something themselves to pay for the products.”

The motion also states how it wants the council to ‘examine the possibility of reusable sanitary products like moon cups.’

Marieanne Elliot, a green party councillor seconded the motion saying: “I also recognised the substantive motion that these are matters that affect the whole of society and not just women. So, it’s important for men to support and understand them as well as women.”

Barbera Masters, a councillor from the Liberal Democrats also made a comment towards the motion, saying: “I just don’t think that a lot of people realise how the age of which periods start are getting lower and lower. A lot of children in junior schools start them. Can you imagine the impact to a 9–10-year-old that hasn’t had this happen to them without this preparation? So, I think straight away there is a platform.” 

Part of the motion is to help support younger women and girls especially when it becomes a barrier for education. According to Research by Plan International UK found that 49 per cent of girls have missed an entire day of school because of their period.

Councillor Maroof Raouf said: “Making menstrual products available for free in all public buildings as well as schools will help remove periods as a barrier to the education of future careers of many in this city who suffer from period poverty.”

The Lord Mayor, Sioned-Mair Richards, ended the debate saying: “Let’s build this for all those girls who need help with their period products.”

The motion was accepted unanimously. 

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