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The Hidden Poverty in America

Guest Blog by Anika Kumar

What is Period Poverty?

When we think of the word poverty, what normally comes to mind are groups of people who have a lack of basic necessities like food, clothing, and shelter. The classification of what is a basic necessity is where our problem starts to arise.

Period Poverty is defined as the inadequate access to menstrual hygiene tools and education, including but not limited to sanitary products, washing facilities, and waste management. People often forget or do not classify menstrual hygiene products as a basic necessity which causes inaccessibility to these products. Along with this, there is also a large amount of stigma around the topic of periods, causing a lack in education about the topic for young women. So when thinking about period poverty, let us think about the lack of education of, and accessibility to necessary menstrual products to live a healthy life.

Who does Period Poverty Affect?

Imagine that you are at the store shopping for groceries. You pick up all the food you need for the week and some menstrual products because you have just started your period. As you start walking towards the checkout you realize that you do not have enough money to buy everything in your cart. What do you choose? Food or menstrual products?

This scenario is not a