On average, the duration of a menstrual cycle is 28 days and, on average, women and girls menstruate for 5 days per month. So, this 28/5, or the 28th of May, we want to take a moment to acknowledge the importance of menstrual hygiene education and awareness in the community. Many women across the globe are affected each day by a lack of awareness, lack of education, persisting stigma and limited access to hygiene products and organisations such as WASH United and Share the Dignity work to end period stigma and build a world where people can access hygiene products and feel empowered to manage their menstruation safely, hygienically, with confidence and without shame.
But what can we do as individuals? So glad you asked! To help achieve this mission and end period poverty, organisations and individuals can step up, break the silence, raise awareness, and change negative social norms surrounding menstrual hygiene around the world. Surprisingly, menstrual products are often not considered necessities and are not subject to a reduced tax rate or exemption. They are often taxed at the same standard rate as more luxurious items.
In countries around the world, individuals and organisations are raising their voices to demand the reduction or elimination of unfair taxes on menstrual products and more and more governments are listening and acting. The more organisations and individuals that add their voices to the global campaign, the more credible, visible, and powerful it will be. Together, we can raise awareness of menstrual hygiene and normalise talking about something that affects so many women and girls across the world.
It’s time to end the stigma and support the community. For more information, you can go to https://menstrualhygieneday.org/ or check out the Menstrual Hygiene Global Campaign Video below
Written by Emma Meldrum, Workplace Mental Health Trainer