New York Assemblywoman Advocates for Free Personal Hygiene Products in Shelters

Lawmaker wants free tampons in schools, prisons and shelters

By Kirstan Conley

March 22, 2017 | 1:26pm
Lawmaker wants free tampons in schools, prisons and shelters

ALBANY — Assemblywoman Linda Rosenthal wants to provide high school students, women in prison and women in homeless shelters with free tampons and pads.

“Access to healthcare is a controversial issue throughout the country, but it is unfathomable to believe that a low-income girl or woman is not worthy of something as basic as pads or tampons once a month,” the Manhattan Democrat said.

High school girls spend several hundred dollars a year on products for menstruation and it costs an entire week’s wages for New York’s female prison inmates to buy a box of tampons, according to Rosenthal.

“Feminine hygiene products should be readily available, as natural and common as toilet paper,” said Kathleen Magee, Director of Domestic Violence Services at Equinox, Inc., which provides shelter, services and advocacy for victims.

Last year, Rosenthal successfully passed legislation doing away with taxes on tampons and pads, arguing access to them is a civil right.
Filed under albany , hygiene , women’s health