A group of students at the University of Glasgow are about to launch their own campaigning group to support ‘The Homeless Period’, a campaign advocating for better access to sanitary products for homeless women.
Anyone who’s ever had a period will know that it’s often uncomfortable, messy and inconvenient, but when homelessness or rough sleeping are added to mix, the problem becomes much more severe.
The initiative was originally set up by three London interns, who were appalled by the lack of access homeless women have to sanitary products like towels and tampons. There is currently no national budget in place to allow homeless shelters to provide these essential items, even though there is provision for condoms. Faced with a choice between spending money on food and on tampons, many women are simply going without.
The campaigners are petitioning the UK government to change this, and they hope to raise awareness of an issue that’s so taboo, most of us have never even thought about it. So far, the online petition has received over 95,000 signatures, and the cause has been picked up by universities, women’s groups and activists as far away as Australia and Canada.
Now, second year student Eleanor Wilson has decided to get involved by setting up a new society at the University of Glasgow to support the work of ‘The Homeless Period.’
“Thousands of women across the country are now using homeless shelters and food banks, and when it comes to choosing between feeding yourself or your family and buying San Pro, it’s easy to see why so many women are going without”, she told qmunicate. “This is in no way an issue that should be tolerated or ignored.”
She added that by setting up the society, “I’m hoping that students across campus will learn about the importance of this cause, relate to it in some way, and get involved. We hope to hold collections, where anyone can hand in a box of tampons or pads for donation, and we also have plans for fundraising and political campaigning.”
The society will hold its first meeting on Friday 15th May at 5:30pm in Lecture Theatre A on the fourth floor of the Boyd Orr Building. A board of members will be elected, with 13 positions available including president and vice president. The society will also be collecting sanitary product donations, which will be given to the Drumchapel Foodbank.
The Facebook event can be found at https://www.facebook.com/events/1388825654776624/
You can sign The Homeless Period petition at http://thehomelessperiod.com/
[Cat Acheson – @cat_acheson]