This guest blog post was written by Aanika Eragam, student at Milton High School and a Homegirl Project fellow. On December 3rd, Aanika spoke to the Fulton County School Board about the need for period products in Fulton County Schools. Prior to that, Aanika reached out to Georgia STOMP regarding her research and intention to speak to the School Board. We are honored to be connected to such a capable young leader! Watch the video and hear why!
On December 3, 2019, a coalition of high school students presented a resolution to the Fulton County School Board, requesting a specific policy amendment that would require secondary schools to provide menstrual products free of cost in restrooms. The event was a culmination of collective student outrage stemming from a lack of access to period products in the school setting, an issue that holds grave implications for students’ mental and physical wellbeing, as well as their academic achievement. When products like toilet paper, hand soap, and paper towels are available free of cost in all restrooms, students had to ask why menstrual products, which are also considered a basic necessity, are not.
Students explained to the Board how a lack of free-of-cost menstrual products in public schools confiscates the basic dignity of students, disrupts the learning environment for girls, and for those living below the poverty line, leaves them without basic access. Students hope they made a strong case to the Board and placed period poverty on the agenda. They will continue to work towards ensuring accountability through civic engagement at the grassroots level.