Southwestern Japanese school board to stock free vintage goods in school bathrooms

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A donation box of unused women’s hygiene products is seen at the Miyazaki Prefectural Center for Gender Equality in Miyazaki City, April 27, 2021. (Mainichi / Kenta Somatani)

MIYAZAKI – A prefectural education council in southwestern Japan has decided to provide sanitary products for women in the 52 bathrooms of prefectural schools so that all girls can take them for free from the beginning of December, in part of a national movement to address “menstrual poverty”, where women cannot afford to buy pads or tampons.

The Miyazaki Prefectural Board of Education tested the free sanitary products initiative for six weeks starting at the end of August this year in a total of seven secondary, secondary and special schools, and conducted a survey. A total of 512 students, or about 30% of female school students, responded to the survey, and of these, 156, or 30.5%, used free sanitary products.

When asked if they had difficulty or had difficulty buying or obtaining vintage products in a multiple-response question, a total of 52 people, or 10%, said they had difficulty “sometimes Or “every time”. When asked where they would like the free products to be stored, 453, or 73%, chose “bathroom stalls.”

Based on the survey, the education council decided to install girls’ toilet cubicles as a place for storing period products. The cost will be covered by each school’s general operating budget used to purchase toilet paper and other necessities.

Yumi Toyama, director of the gender equality nonprofit organization Miyazaki, which is involved in the collection and free distribution of unused health products in a donation box at the Center for Gender Equality in Miyazaki Prefecture said the company was moving in a better direction. She added: “Now that the prefectural government has taken action, we expect a ripple effect spreading to municipal primary and secondary schools. ‘did with the toilet paper. ”

(Japanese original by Kenta Somatani, Miyazaki Bureau)


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