“On your period? We’ve got you!”
As a positive update to my previous article ‘IE, Where are the Accessible Period Products?’ and thanks to a student government initiative and many dedicated students advocating for the cause, free period products are now available in the women’s bathrooms on each of the hub floors of the tower! If you ever find yourself in need of a pad or a tampon, you can head to floors 4,10,16, or 22 to find what you’re looking for. In the case that there are no more products left in the basket, the -3 infirmary has more stock available, and Campus Life has said that the hours of the infirmary have been changed to be more accommodating for students.
It is refreshing to see that IE in cooperation with IE Student Government has listened to the will of the student body and made such period products available. Each time that I have gone into a hub bathroom since the initiative has been put into action, there have been surprised yet enthusiastic reactions going on about how happy people are to see that pads and tampons are so easily accessible in the bathroom itself. There is no longer the need to go searching for the basic products that we need to feel comfortable and accommodated, and that in and of itself is an accomplishment. While it may seem minor to some, the mere providement of free pads and tampons not only fuels the fight to end period stigmas but also helps to guarantee access to education for everyone at university. While in the past not having a pad or tampon may have caused a student to return home early, there are now means to foster a learning environment where everyone feels comfortable and welcome. For many, this small change makes all the difference.
The success story of the student push towards free and accessible period products provided by the university should act as inspiration for anyone who has something that they want to be changed around campus. If there is an issue that you believe must be addressed, I urge you to make it known to IE and advocate for what you believe is right. You will be amazed by what you might achieve.
I want to thank the IE Student Government and every student involved behind the scenes for making this initiative possible. It was years in the making, but ultimately what is important is that tangible change was achieved. Moving forwards, the next step could be transforming the baskets with the products into more permanent installations, but ultimately the important thing is that there are now free and accessible pads and tampons in each hub floor bathroom. Let IE know what you think about the initiative by scanning the QR code above!