Should Feminine Products be Provided in Bathrooms?

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Should Feminine Products be Provided in Bathrooms?

Ashley Jackson, Journalist

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Should feminine products be provided in bathrooms?

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  A universal problem that women and girls can relate to and understand, is the difficulty to access the necessary products for their menstrual cycle. While access may come easier to others, sometimes girls just get unlucky and that is a recurring problem in high school.

    Sometimes the ‘time of the month’ can come as a surprise after the day has already started, and come as a surprise as some girls do not track their period or they simply start early or late, that surprise is a real pain. Without access to feminine products, they have a few options- all of which uncomfortable in some way. There’s making a makeshift pad/tampon out of toilet paper, texting a friend and hoping she can borrow from them, or asking whomever may be in the restroom at the time. There’s not always an opportunity to ask the office, nor do girls always have change on them if needed. There is a solution for this, well for high schoolers at least and that is to provide feminine products in school bathrooms. The only question is, is this actually a good idea?

“It’s easier for girls,” says Junior Adrianna Guzman, “so they don’t have to feel embarrassed about asking the office or a random girl if she has any.”

    While Guzman makes a good point, her response raises another couple of questions, like how would Ripon High go about providing said products? While it may not seem like that big of deal, the difference of production is an even bigger difference in cost.

    Not even thinking about the cost of the actual products, feminine hygiene dispensers’ cost ranges from around 200 to 700 dollars and when you consider the multiple bathrooms on campus plus installation and maintenance, the cost starts to add up. Also the already hardworking staff at Ripon high would have another thing added to their long list of tasks and that’s to make sure these dispensers stay filled. However the school doesn’t necessarily have to buy said dispenser, they could just put it in a basket on and the bathroom counter. While most students would be respectful, there is always the risk of someone taking advantage of something like that, so the school would just have to trust the integrity of the students.

     Besides just dispensing options, there is also the cost of the actual products themselves. While the office does technically already provide them, the accessibility becoming easier will most like cause the usage rate to increase.

     According to a study done at USA Today in 2017, the average woman spends $150-$300 each year on feminine products. Now when you take that into consideration of the number of girls at Ripon high, plus visitors at say sporting events, the cost could be anywhere in the thousands for the school to provide these products each year.

    In light of this new information, one may ask again, is providing feminine products in schools a good idea? Perhaps so, because according to 90% of participants in a poll, girls do.

“Because girls need their pads!” Junior Maria Soto says.