Cynon Valley AM welcomes Welsh Government money to tackle period poverty

Cynon Valley AM Vikki Howells has welcomed news that the Welsh Government will be giving over £1 million to help address period poverty and enhance school facilities to ensure dignity for girls and young women.

Under the announcement, £440,000 will be given to local authorities over the next two years to tackle period poverty in communities where levels of deprivation are highest. An extra £700,000 of capital funding will be used to improve facilities and equipment in schools – ensuring that all girls and young women can access good sanitary facilities when they need them.

This follows on from the recent decision by RCT Council to provide free sanitary products in local schools.

Making the announcement, Welsh Government Minister Julie James AM said: 

“Local councils are best placed to know where to target effective action for tackling period poverty in their communities, which is why we are asking them to use this funding to distribute feminine hygiene products to those who need them most.

“Funding will also be used to improve toilet facilities in our schools. We know from research that many girls are starting their periods at a younger age and, while secondary schools often have the facilities they need in place, they can be lacking in primary schools.

“I want to ensure all girls and young women studying at schools in Wales have access to appropriate facilities which give them the dignity they deserve.”

Cynon Valley AM Vikki Howells added:

“Whilst RCT Council has taken a very welcome lead on tackling period poverty, it is good that the Welsh Government is making sure funding is available so that Welsh councils can meet these needs and provide dignity to all girls and young women in our schools.

“Research shows that a quarter of 14-21 year old women have been unable to afford or have struggled to afford sanitary wear, and this can lead to them missing school which has an impact on their education.

“With this important policy announcement, we can tackle period poverty and make sure no girls or young women in Welsh schools  have to suffer because they cannot afford sanitary products.”