Richmond School District plans to have free menstrual products for its students, following a ministerial order that they must be made available.
Currently, the school district is collecting information from elementary and secondary schools in order to buy dispensary equipment, according to David Sadler, the school district’s spokesperson.
Feedback is expected by the end of September, and then an implementation timeline will be developed once the feedback is reviewed, Sadler added.
The Ministry of Education has ordered all school districts in the province to provide the products to any student who needs them, and is asking boards of education to create policies and procedures that take into account student feedback.
The rationale is that the school system should promote gender equality, and that a lack of access to menstrual products can have a negative impact on attendance and social-emotional well-being.
The menstrual products must be available in washrooms for students “of all gender identities,” according to the ministry website. They have to be free, easily accessible and be non-stigmatizing.