More than 1,000 islanders have given their backing to a petition calling for period products to be made free for all, meaning Ministers will now have to respond.
The e-petition, set up by Jasmine Eisha Beaumont, aims to make menstrual products accessible to those who may not be able to afford them.
On the e-petition page, she explains: “Jersey needs to follow Scotland and make period products free for all and make them accessible for everyone who needs them.
“Now more than ever women are experiencing poverty due to the corona virus pandemic but they’re still having to pay for products; this has crippled many families financially.”
It comes as members of the Scottish Parliament last week voted unanimously for Scotland to be the first country in the world to make period products free and available to all who need them.
Pictured: A Ministerial response is expected as the petition has reached over 1,000 signatures.
Jasmine added: “As part of a project for my Queens Guide award I have been researching period poverty and it shocked me how many women and girls need period products but cannot afford them.
“I’m campaigning to make a real difference in people’s lives and standing up for those who don’t have the power or strength to fight for a fundamental human female monthly necessity.”
The Red Box Project Jersey, which currently provides free tampons and menstrual pads freely to local schools, gave their backing to the campaign on Facebook.
"We have spoken with many people on island whom have shared their own stories of embarrassment, shame and often, poverty in relation to periods and staying in education," they wrote.
"We have been told of homemade solutions when menstrual items could not be afforded such as socks, toilet paper, cloth and simply staying home when nothing else could be sourced. We have been told of some teachers funding these essential menstrual items themselves when schools supplies have dwindled due to demand and where finances haven't been allocated to them because they are so desperately needed elsewhere or simply not prioritised. This is not acceptable and is entirely avoidable when support and resources are funded and made accessible."
Challenged on whether the Government would step in to provide period products for free back in February by Deputy Rob Ward, the then-Assistant Education Minister Deputy Jeremy Maçon, said that the Government welcomed the Red Box Project's efforts in providing them.
However, he noted that, for the Government to step in, evidence of need in the community would have to first be provided. "We do not have that, at this time, but the Department will be asking head teachers and students about whether this is an issue for them, in order to gain that evidence and make a decision about whether it would be appropriate to enhance the process," Deputy Maçon, who was recently appointed Children's Minister, said at the time.
Pictured: The Red Box Project Jersey already provides menstrual products to local schools.
Ministers are expected to provide an official response to the e-petition - if it reaches 5,000 signatures, States Members will be asked to debate the proposal.
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