It's hard to believe that there's still a stigma around menstruation in 2018, even though it's a natural – not to mention normal – bodily process. But now a national survey by Plan International Canada has shown that the negative perception not only persists, but also has profound implications for women's lives.
The online survey, which included 2,000 Canadian women, found 83 percent of that age 1
"Menstruation can affect the lives of girls and women in many different ways, including cramps, lack of access to painkillers or lack of access to hygiene products, and there are many factors that can affect their ability to fully participate in daily life Activities, "Youth Attorney Amy Bing, of Plan International Canada, told HuffPost Canada in an email.
Period Poverty – the inability to provide menstrual products – is of particular concern to women in Canada and around the world, added Bing
Indeed, the national study found that one-third of Canadian women under the age of 25 had difficulties to provide hygiene products to manage their periods.
The survey did not explain why this could be more than three-quarters (77 percent) of respondents agreed that feminine care products are one of the three most important material costs for women besides cosmetics and beauty services.
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"What all of the men who menstruate know, and what this information dramatically underlines, is that menstrual hygiene products are not a luxury ," said Caroline Riseboro, President and CEO of Plan International Canada, to HuffPost Canada via Email
"Hygiene products such as toilet paper, soap and water are not optional and are essential and essential to the health, comfort and participation of women and girls in work, school and society."
In addition, to prevent women and girls from getting equal career and learning opportunities, a lack of accessible menstrual products also contributes to the taboo of the period as it conveys the message that menstruation is abnormal.
However, some campaigns are trying to change that. Like the "Free the Tampon" movement at Toronto Centennial College, Riseboro noted.
The initiative provides women's feminine care products free of charge in all women's washrooms on the campus of the College in Toronto. And in an effort to be comprehensive, the packaging is gender-neutral to acknowledge that trans and non-binary students are also menstruating, as CBC News reports.
"Such actions are not only groundbreaking in the fight against poverty, but also to normalize menstrual products as something that should be easily accessible everywhere, and not something that women and girls are ashamed of should fight, "said Riseboro in relation to the campaign" Free the Tampon ".
While periods are still taboo, schooling in major Canadian cities – including Montreal, Calgary, and Halifax – the conversation about menstruation is slowly changing.
"I think there are these little bags of change that are occurring and over time, especially when institutions like ours start to jump on this bandwagon and start offering these products for free, you will grow Hopefully exponential growth – in this move, "said Shannon Brooks, Associate Vice Centennial President of Corporate Services, told CBC News. "Too often, menstruation is treated as a secret that only women and girls can talk about behind closed doors – if at all," she said. "People of all genders must come together to have genuine, open discussions on these issues and raise their voices in order to meet the social, emotional and financial costs of menstruation."
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The Government of Canada abolished the tax on menstrual products in 2015, and in February of this year, the NDP decided to free up those products.
"Tampons and pads should be treated the same way as toilet paper," said Tiffany Balducci, a Durham Labor Council delegate. "They serve a similar purpose – items that tend to our everyday, normal bodily functions."
The recognition that barrier-free feminine hygiene products are needed shows that people are finally recognizing that shame is gender-based discrimination.
recognizing that period stigma, taboos, lack of access to menstrual hygiene products and the resulting loss of opportunities for full participation in society are part of a larger picture of how women and girls are discriminated against on a daily basis, "said Riseboro. 19659010] "We urge everyone to initiate the conversation at specific times, take action, and promote menstrual hygiene in women and girls."
Plan International Canada's national study took place at an appropriate time, such as on May 28, Menstruationshygienetag
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