September 12, 2018 4.10 pm This story is over 36 months old

Call to action over North East Lincolnshire period poverty

Councillors will hear girls resort to using ‘improvised’ sanitary wear

Councillors shocked to discover young women in North East Lincolnshire are using items such as socks and tissues in place of sanitary products are calling for period poverty solutions.

A motion before the authority next Thursday calls for distribution of free sanitary products to schools, colleges and council facilities.

It also calls for a review of period poverty across the district to be sent to Central Government to demand further action.

Labour Councillor Gemma Sheridan is leading the motion to tackle period poverty.

The motion was tabled by Labour Councillor Gemma Sheridan.

She wrote: “A significant proportion of women and girls within and out of our borough find themselves in a position where they either can’t access sanitary products or can’t afford sanitary products.

“Period Poverty is a growing issue…with some women spending well over £10,000 on sanitary products over their lifetime.”

The motion says the introduction of Universal Credit, the stagnation of wages and VAT on the necessities, is forcing women to make ‘difficult decisions about whether to purchase sanitary products’

It adds: “This council is concerned that women and girls are resorting to using items such as socks and tissues in place of sanitary products, putting their health at significant risk.”

The councillors point to a recent survey which said that 10% girls aged 14-21 in the authority have been unable to afford sanitary wear, with 15% reporting struggling with the costs.

According to the figures, 14% of girls have been forced to borrow from a friend, while 12% have had to ‘improvise sanitary wear’ because they were unable to afford it.

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