Posts tagged #women's rights

#NoMoreLimits on Menstrual Hygiene

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Today is the 5th annual Menstrual Hygiene Day! Whoop whoop!! 

MH Day raises awareness of the challenges women and girls worldwide face due to their menstruation and highlights solutions that address these challenges.
— MenstrualHygieneDay.org

It's a pretty great time to be a woman in the world but there is still a LOT of work to be done.

In regards to menstruation, while I am incredibly proud that my homeland,  Canada, has done away with the so-called "tampon tax", the majority of countries around the globe still charge a tax on feminine hygiene products calling them a "luxury".

The very real fact is that every woman between the ages of 12 and 52, or thereabouts, needs products once a month to help manage their monthly bleed. Unfortunately, many women in poor countries cannot afford such necessities (are they therefore a luxury?) and their whole lives can be impacted negatively due to this simple fact. They may opt out of school to save themselves, and by proxy their families, embarrassment should whatever inadequate means they are using leak and their blood is exposed to the general public. 

Also, all too frequently, poor women in some of the poorest nations uses dirty clothes and even mud and leaves to staunch their monthly flow. This is bad for their health for a multitude of reasons, least of which is the lack of sanitation. 

Likewise, many women in developing countries do not have daily access to clean water so how can they possibly clean themselves in dirty water?

As we are seeing is many other aspects of this wonderful world, women are coming together and forming movements to spur change...think of the #TimesUp and #MeToo movement. There is also the #smashtheshame movement which wants menstruation to be a topic that everyone, male or female, can discuss openly without feeling ashamed or told to be quiet. It is unfortunate but many cultures consider menstruation a taboo topic and openly shun women who are menstruating from their homes, schools and religious institutions on the basis that while bleeding they are unclean.  It is only through open communication can we learn and teach and grow and change the uneducated minds that make the rules.

Despite increasing evidence for taking urgent action, menstruation remains a neglected public health, social and educational issue that requires prioritization, investment and concentrated effort at national and local levels.
— Preeti Shakya

Many young women do not learn the basic fundamentals of their monthly periods, and more than we can to know are completely surprised by their first period. These women may have little idea how their monthly cycles affects and can be affected by their general health and fertility. Obviously this is important information that every girl should know. Personally of course, I think each girl on the planet should be given a Female Empowerment Bracelet upon her first period, otherwise known as menarche. Then for the next 4o years or so, until the menopause, she will have an understanding of the subtle but significant changes occurring within her body and what they mean and act according to her own desires. 

This #MHDay won't you join me and spread the word? If you think every girl should have access to education and products for their periods, please be brave and put something on social media about it or simply talk in person with a group or even just one young woman - chances are the conversation will be more welcome and informative than you could even imagine. I have found myself in many discussions with young women just starting their menstrual journey and I am constantly amazed at the seemingly never-ending supply of questions. For many girls, you may be the safest source of information. 

If you would like more information regarding #MHDay please visit their website at www.menstrualhygieneday.org 

Also, I am hosting a giveaway with an empowering prize pack. Head on over to giveaway to enter.

 

 

  

What do Taxes and Carcinogens Have to do with Tampons?

A harder to digest news item and one that concerns every woman not just the British is  that a University in Argentinareleased a report to the World Health Organization claiming that up to 85% of tampons and sanitary napkins contain a probable carcinogenic known as glyphosate. 

Proud Partner of Menstrual Hygiene Day

Feby is proud to be a partner of Menstrual Hygiene Day. 2015 will be the 2nd such day and the same as last year it will take place on May 28. This date was specifically chosen as it represents the average number of days a woman bleeds (5) out of the average length of a cycle (28). 

One reason there is the need for such a day is that ensuring good menstrual hygiene management (MHM) can support the fulfillment of some basic human needs and rights. One such right is the fundamental right to human dignity. Many women across the world are denied this right when they are forced into seclusion because they are menstruating or when they must use leaves or dirty rags to manage their menstruation.

Another reason for Menstrual Hygiene Day is to protect the environment. Many disposable products that are used to manage menstruation are harmful to the environment in a multitude of ways. Many tampons and sanitary pads are made using harsh chemicals such as chlorine and dioxin. These ingredients can leach into the groundwater from the landfills where they rest (for as much as hundreds of years before they biodegrade) and this causes pollution and health concerns. If tampons or pads are disposed of incorrectly through sewage systems this can cause a breakdown in said system and can also lead to public health concerns. 

Menstrual hygiene is also fundamental to making the economy stronger, ensuring health and well-being of all citizens and advancing education. 

All too often girls must also miss school when they are on their periods and this denies them the basic right of education. 

Education about the menstrual cycle and how to manage it is the key to overcoming cultural taboos. In doing so we will eventually live in a world where menstruating women are no longer forbidden from doing everything that non-menstruating women and all males can do. Education is only possible when we communicate effectively about the obstacles that many face.

Here at Feby I've long been an advocate of open and honest discussion on all things menstrual. Won't you join me in helping overcome the remaining stigma and shame associated with menstruation? This is as easy to do as honestly discussing your concerns with family, friends, coworkers and the like without the need to whisper and giggle. Men are equally invested in a strong and healthy future for all and will benefit from understanding the facts regarding menstruation instead of turning away and ignoring any potential problems or hazards. Do not be embarrassed of having such discussions when males are also present. 

For more information please check out this infograph:

and this video entitled  The Monthlies 

and visit Menstrual Hygiene Day.org 

Peace, love and menstrual empowerment for all!