1000 Words...PERIOD POVERTY
As a few of you may know the 1000 Words series is something I began on Instagram. I truly believe picture aids can help get over important information in a clear and thought-provoking way. I've decided to begin to also post my 1000 Word series on here to give the important issues I photograph more of an audience. Thank you.
PERIOD POVERTY IS REAL
Period poverty is real. It is estimated that a person that menstruates will spend on average just under £11 month. Now a that's a lot and it doesn't even include the cost of emotional and physical pain that periods can often come with. £11 a month is a colossal amount to pay for something that you can't help and a that's natural part of the body system.
It is estimated that 1 in 10 girls of school age can't afford sanitary products and often have to borrow from friends or make do with what they can find in their surroundings. Furthermore, research by Plan International UK showed that 49% of girls had missed an entire day of school at some point due to a period. I think anyone would agree that something must be done to may periods more affordable and less taboo.
The stigma surrounding periods means that often people are scared to talk about them or even join in on jokes that stereotype characteristics such as mood swings. These may just seem like jokes but the percentage of girls missing school due to periods suggests otherwise. It is not only being the butt of a joke that can be difficult it is the lack of evidence and research into effective period relief and assistance that is also unnervingly low.
Every day 800 million women have their period, so let's start talking about it! It's not taboo it's normal and something many people have to deal with for a large proportion of their life. There's no point suffering in silence. It's important to know your own body and the fact you're not alone.
Scotland has made leaps and bounds in terms of period poverty and recently this year made all sanitary products free - TO ALL. That includes people that often find it extremely difficult to get any sanitary wear at all such as the homeless. The Period Products (Free Provision) (Scotland) Bill states that period products will be free to anyone that needs them, this includes ANYONE that menstruates such as women, non-binary people and transgender people.
With so many people menstruating and going through the same thing there must be a way to make things better. Let's try and find it!
You can find out hashtags and accounts that confront period stigmatism and poverty on my Instagram story highlight.