- McGowan Government commits to provide access to free period products for secondary students
- All public schools with Year 7-12 students to be provided with free period products
- Improving access to these products will help keep students engaged and in school
Students at all State Government secondary schools will soon have access to free period products.
More than 220 public schools will be provided with free period products from next year, with the McGowan Government initiative to be rolled out from Term 1.
Period products are a fundamental health necessity, but the cost and the stigma associated with them means many students do not have access to the items they need while at school.
The 2021 Bloody Big Survey found almost half of the 125,000 respondents missed a class due to their period, and three quarters said when they did attend school during their period, they found it difficult to pay attention.
Evidence shows improving access to tampons and pads keeps students engaged in education, improves public health outcomes, and helps them reach their full potential.
A procurement process will soon get under way for the provision of free period products for students in Years 7 to 12 in public secondary schools across the State.
Comments attributed to Women's Interests Minister Simone McGurk:
"No student should miss out on school because they don't have access to period products.
"In recent years there has been growing recognition that period products are a basic health necessity, and the simple act of making them more accessible removes barriers to education.
"By delivering on this important initiative we are helping to end the stigma surrounding periods and building on our commitment to advance gender equality in WA. This will help improve education outcomes for women and girls."
Comments attributed to Education and Training Minister Sue Ellery:
"Having your period should not be a barrier to engaging with school.
"Young people are dealing with a range of issues during their high school years and we don't want them to miss opportunities that are crucial to their growth.
"This program will give young women some comfort by ensuring they have access to free sanitary products when they need them."
Women's Interests Minister's office - 6552 6600
Education and Training Minister's office - 6552 5700