[Text on screen]: Have you heard of period poverty?

More than half the world’s population deal with periods every month.

But not everyone can afford essential sanitary products.

Period poverty: a human rights issue.

Periods have always been a fact of life...but they’ve not always been understood.

Ancient Romans thought menstruating women could stop hailstorms and kill crops.

Medieval Europeans thought period blood was linked to leprosy.

It wasn’t until the 19th Century that doctors realised they were linked to ovulation.

Modern tampons were invented in 1929…and have since become a popular way of dealing with periods.

The average women will spend £18,000 on sanitary products in their lifetime.

Period poverty is when women and girls can't afford to buy sanitary products…such as tampons or pads when on their period.

Not being able to access basic products means women are being deprived of their dignity.

Girls are sometimes forced to miss school because of period poverty... a potential breach of their right to education.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights states we should have a right to health…

… not having sanitary products can seriously affect someone’s hygiene and health.

There is currently also a VAT charge on tampons, unlike other “essentials” like Jaffa Cakes.

But some supermarkets have been reducing the price of sanitary products to combat the tampon tax.

Campaign groups like ‘Bloody Good Period’ fight to bring sanitary products to those who can’t afford them.

Some political parties are promising to end period poverty in their manifestos… ...thanks to the pressure from thousands of the public.

Sanitary products are a basic medical need, they impact on our basic human rights.

Nobody should be disadvantaged by a biological process which they can’t control.
Equality, Health, Women

Period poverty is a human rights issue

Published on 29 Nov 2019

Period poverty affects our human rights in several ways.

It’s a a hidden injustice affecting millions of people across the world.

Countless people don’t have access to essential sanitary products or safe spaces in which to use them. This is period poverty.

Learn more about the issue in the video above. If you want to know more about period poverty and human rights, check out our period poverty spotlight page.

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