Sinn Féin’s Education spokesperson Kathleen Funchion TD has said that her party would be supporting the Oireachtas Women’s Caucus motion which calls on the Government to provide a range of sanitary products in all public buildings such as schools and prisons.
The motion also calls on the Government to work with other EU countries to lower VAT on sanitary products.
Deputy Funchion said:
“I commend the Oireachtas Women’s Caucus for bringing forward its first piece of Oireachtas business on such a real issue that affects women everywhere, regardless of class or where you come from.
“However, the reality is that in very practical terms, the high cost of sanitary items for women, girls and families that are struggling financially or indeed, who are homeless poses an added stress.
“It is an additional significant cost that is necessary, not a luxury item.
“The motion recognises advances made by other countries such as the Scottish success of a 6 month pilot in Aberdeen, to provide free products in all schools funded by the Scottish Government.
“It also recognises the announcement by Dublin City Council September 2018 that provision would be made for free sanitary products in buildings such as community centres, swimming pools and libraries.
“It also recognises the work of organisations such as Plan Ireland International and The Homeless Period to alleviate the stress and financial burden placed on women and girls due to period poverty.
“We fully support the calls on Government to provide a range of sanitary products in all public buildings, from schools to prisons, to work with other EU countries to lower VAT on sanitary products.
“We also support the calls on the Government to provide information and education to everyone, and to make tackling period poverty in the rest of the world a priority element of the work of Irish Aid.
“The motion will have the full support of Sinn Féin.”