by Jacqueline Bruce
The last week of November 2020 will forever be a monumental week in human rights history.
It was the week Scotland became the first country in the world to end period poverty.
When free sanitary products first started being distributed through schools, colleges and universities in August 2018, I was doing litter pick beach cleans with Friends of Dumbarton Foreshore.
I remember we were all quite repelled by the plastic tampon holders being washed up on our shores.
Even though those free period products were unlikely to be the more expensive, plastic applicator products, seeing those washed up ‘beach whistles’ got me thinking, “should free period products also be sustainable?”
Plastic Free for WD
In the short time since the initiative was launched, it’s a question I don’t have to consider for the local area.
As West Dunbartonshire Council teamed up with social enterprise Hey Girls, to provide plastic-free and reusable period products to anyone who needs them.
As well as the toxic plastic found decorating our shorelines and confusing the fish, plastic is found in all mass-produced tampons, pads and liners.
With Hey Girls products, it isn’t the case.
You won’t find any nasties across any of their range.
For those able to take the plunge and switch to a menstrual cup or reusable pads or pants, there’s the added bonus of never having to worry about running out of products.
The Council is offering the best products for people and planet.
It’s a win-win.
Best Health First
Whilst putting an end to period poverty here and all over the world is far more important than making sure it’s done sustainably, it doesn’t mean we can’t or shouldn’t be talking about both.
There are huge benefits to having the sustainability message as part of ending period poverty.
And it’s wonderful West Dunbartonshire Council along with other local authorities in Scotland are doing just that.
To order a three month supply of plastic-free period products complete the online form https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/Z7RZLRY
Supplies are also available from West Dunbartonshire Foodshare and Food For Thought.