New Westminster school board votes to provide free tampons in schools

New Westminster is the first and only school district in B.C. to fund free pad and tampon dispensers at all its schools.

Selina Tribe and Janet Andrews of New West District Labour Council and Neal Adolph of United Way of the Lower Mainland appeared before the New Westminster school board Tuesday to advocate for free sanitary pads and tampons in New Westminster schools. The school board voted supply free menstrual products in school bathrooms. Submitted

The New Westminster school board has voted in favour of supplying free pads and tampons in restrooms at the district’s schools.

Coin-free dispensers will be installed in all girls and universal restrooms in elementary, middle and secondary schools, making New Westminster the first and only school district in B.C. to fund free pad and tampon dispensers at all its schools.

In a motion passed Tuesday, the school board hoped the move would “enhance the ability of students to manage menstruation without undue delay, embarrassment, financial burden, or shame.”


New Westminster school trustees also passed a motion to ask the British Columbia School Trustees Association (BCSTA) to request that the Ministry of Education and Ministry of Finance fund all B.C. school districts, to purchase, install and supply free tampon and pad dispensers bathrooms in every school in the province.

The school board also endorsed the Period Promise campaign by United Way of the Lower Mainland. The campaign, which runs March 7 to April 4, invites people to donate menstrual products, to organize their own collection drive, or to commit to providing menstrual products free of charge in facilities.

A delegation of United Way representatives presented at the February 26 meeting, alongside Vancouver resident and activist Selina Tribe. Tribe began advocating for free sanitary products in schools earlier this year and has presented before several school districts.




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