Vorburgs Dagblad | CDA concerned about poor menstruation

Poor menstruation. It is no longer a word that has little meaning. When will women in Leidschendam, Voorburg and Stumpvik not be hindered by lack of financial resources from participating in social life and education throughout the month? The Anti-Poverty Fund opened the 1,000th point of release for menstrual products in Utrecht this year.

In Scotland, from 15 August there will be a law in force making tampons and sanitary pads free. In other countries too, tampons and sanitary towels are distributed free of charge, especially in schools. This happens, for example, in New Zealand, England, Botswana, various US and Australian states. Kenya was the first country in the world to take measures in this area in 2018.

In 2021, CDA Leidschendam-Voorburg, along with CU-SGP, D66, GroenLinks and PvdA, submitted a proposal calling for the exploration of options, among other things, to prevent “menstrual shame”, social poverty and dropout from classrooms and lectures among girls and women. By (helping) provide menstrual products. Despite the fact that the proposal was adopted by a large majority at the time, the Board did not see any action as a result of this proposal yet,” explains CDA Board Member Diederik Visser.

“Research by the non-profit organization Plan International shows that, on average, 1 in 10 girls and women in the Netherlands does not have the money to buy tampons or sanitary pads each month,” Visser says. In these expensive and uncertain times. For many, to achieve a better infrastructure to help our municipality. The CDA hopes that this council will pick up the challenge once again and start working.”

The CDA therefore asks the following follow-up questions to the mayor’s college and members of the House of Representatives:

Insufficient income, poverty, lack of funding to purchase basic products for daily use and the additional burden of rising energy costs and inflation as a result of the situation in Ukraine.

These are all elements that draw attention to a specific question: how can a (young) woman take care of her personal hygiene in a decent way.

In the municipality of Utrecht, additional measures have been taken for this purpose in cooperation with the Poverty Fund. This was evident from the NOS news regarding the distribution of menstrual products.

Taking into account the proposal made by the CDA, along with the other parties, the CDA has the following questions:

The Board last provided an update on June 24th on the current status regarding implementation of the “Providing menstrual products as a social mission” proposal. What is the current state of things.

In its June 24 update, the college indicated that it would begin a trial with the schools. What does this have to do with the explicit request in the above-mentioned proposal that the results of inventory and research be submitted first to the Council?

When does the Committee think it will be able to return to the Council with an inventory and research to be done so that the Council, in addition to taking note of the measures underway, can engage the discussion on this fundamental matter under discussion on a broader poverty policy and/or specific poverty reduction measures Like the availability of menstrual products?
Availability of adequate menstrual products is partly a social problem. Because of the poverty trap created by the current crisis and financial problems, it is now a broader problem for larger parts of the society.

Does the council have insight into whether there has been an apparent increase in the number of people for whom the availability of menstrual products is a problem in the municipality of Leidschendam-Vorburg?

Is the college willing to increase the financial provision for the implementation of the above movement, given the broader problem of larger parts of society, and if so, by how much?

Does the institute see possibilities, whether in collaboration with others or not, to make this facility structural?
If not, what are the considerations for that?

The above NOS article states that the Poverty Fund has increased its sites to provide free period products fivefold in the past year. There are also a number of sites in the municipality of Leidschendam-Voorburg (1 in Leidschendam and 5 in Voorburg2).

Is the council ready to open more sites in the municipality in consultation with or through the poverty fund?

Does the council agree with the CDA that these six sites are insufficient anyway for a municipality the size of Leidschendam-Vorburg?

Does the municipality communicate through well-known municipal institutions – such as schools – or organizations – such as a food bank – associations (neighbourhood) or churches, institutions and initiators – such as Ms. Founder – that free menstruation products are available on such sites?

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