A PILOT scheme to help those who struggle to pay for tampons and sanitary pads is to continue at 14 city council sites in Leicester.
The trial was launched in May this year as part of the council’s commitment to tackling period poverty, with free sanitary products available at a number of the council’s Children, Young People and Families Centres (CYPFCs).
Over the course of the three-month trial, hundreds of girls and women benefitted from the free products, making use of more than 800 tampons and pads.
The trial was so successful that the scheme will now be rolled out – on a permanent basis – to more council buildings, with free tampons and sanitary pads available in the toilets at two youth centres and all 12 CYPFCs.
Cllr Vi Dempster, assistant city mayor for health, said: “The cost of living crisis is now really beginning to bite, and period poverty is becoming a serious issue for many girls and women across the city.
“As a council, we are committed to doing what we can to help people who are struggling to get by – and providing free period products is one way to help ease the burden and ensure that those on low incomes don’t need to worry about not being able to afford these essential items.
“Period products should be accessible to all who need them, so I’m delighted that this pilot scheme is now being rolled out to 14 council sites.
“We’ll be evaluating the pilot scheme over the coming months and considering whether we can make these free products available from more council buildings in the future.”
Cllr Sarah Russell, deputy city mayor for social care and anti-poverty, said: “Our children, young people and families centres provide vital services for many young women in Leicester – and this scheme will provide some welcome additional support, at a time when everyone is worrying about the cost of everyday essentials.”
Tampons and sanitary pads are available free of charge from the toilets at all 12 CYPFCs. A list of centres is available here
The free products are also available in the toilets at the Kingfisher and New Parks youth centres.
An annual budget of £2,000 has been allocated to continue to fund the scheme at all 14 buildings.