New Zealand to hand out free period products to all students 4 months ago

New Zealand to hand out free period products to all students

It is not the first time New Zealand have led the way this year

New Zealand has pledged to give out free period products to all students later this year.

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Beginning in June, the rollout is designed to put a stop to "period poverty", whereby females from low-income backgrounds are restricted in their access to sanitary products due to cost.

The knock-on effect of this negatively impacts education, health and future employment.

Speaking during a visit to a school in Hamilton, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said: "Young people should not miss out on their education because of something that is a normal part of life for half the population."

The policy occurred off the back of research conducted by the University of Otago.

Sarah Donovan, a researcher at this institution, said: "Kids aren't going to go to school if they haven't got menstrual products, because it's so shameful and embarrassing.

"There's still this big stigma around it. It's been this hidden problem of social inequity that no one had thought of."

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In November 2020, Scotland became the first nation on Earth to make period products free for those who need them.

Last month, the UK government announced it would repeal the 'tampon tax', which bizarrely classed sanitary products as non-essential items.

New Zealand's leaders have received praise for their handling of the coronavirus pandemic.

The country has seen just 25 Covid-related deaths in a population of five million over the past 12 months.

Ardern recently announced that the country would be closing its borders for the entirety of 2021.

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Just over two weeks ago, 22,000 people attended a gig by popular New Zealand outfit Six60, with no requirement for masks or social distancing.

A three-day lockdown was recently imposed in parts of New Zealand, however, due to a small outbreak of Covid-19.

Approximately two million people in Auckland were given a strict stay-at-home order over the weekend after three members of the same family were found to be infected with coronavirus.