Page 16 - EGO May 2019
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       International                                            Period poverty
                                                                in particular,
       Women’s Day                                              was an issue
                                                                that the young

       2019                                                     women felt
                                                                needed tackling
                                                                as a matter of
       Images by / lluniau gan: Laura Garside
       Period poverty, access to mental health services and
       equal pay were among the issues raised by young
       women on International Women’s Day 2019

                                    INCREASE THE NATIONAL       pledge to fund free menstrual
                    n 8 March, in   MINIMUM WAGe for apprentices   products in English schools.
                    collaboration   and roll out National Living Wage   Ben has written to the Leader
                    with the Young   for under-25s              of Ceredigion County Council
                    Women’s Trust,                              urging the local authority to look
                    Ben Lake MP     PERIOD POVERTY: campaign,   at ways they can help tackle this
      Ohosted a ‘Real               raise awareness and look to   gendered inequality, such as
       Talk’ workshop aimed at young   introduce policies to mitigate the   providing sanitary products free
       women aged 16 to 30 years old.   effects of period poverty  of charge in all public buildings
       Young women from all walks of                            including schools, libraries,
       life came together at the Coliseum   Period poverty in particular, was   community centres and council
       Coffee House to voice their   an issue that the young women   owned and operated public offices.
       concerns and share their hopes for   felt needed tackling as a matter   Such implementations would have
       the future.                  of urgency. A recent report from   significant impact on the lives of
         Ben Lake said: “It was great to   FreedomforGirls found that period   women across the county.
       hear new ideas for change and   poverty has a direct impact on   Ben looks forward to making
       to discuss ways in which we can   education, with pupils in Wales   further representations on behalf
       improve the lives of young people   missing lessons every month due   of the young women who made
       in Ceredigion. The experiences of   to their periods. A RightsInfo   their voices heard at the workshop
       women and girls must be heard,   investigation discovered thousands   over the next few months. He also
       both locally and nationally. After   of women were relying on food   intends to hold similar events in
       all, it is impossible for policies to   banks to get through their monthly   future to engage and consult with
       be truly effective if they do not   periods.             constituents across all age groups
       reflect the wishes, and address the   Since the workshop, Ben has   and backgrounds.
       challenges faced by all in society.”  welcomed the Welsh Government’s
         The young women set out three   very recent announcement about
       priorities for Ben to campaign on:  the “period dignity grant for   Freedom for Girls:
                                    schools” scheme in Wales. It follows
       EDUCATION: ensure that equality   the Scottish government’s funding
       issues and mental health awareness   of free sanitary items in schools,   RightsInfo: www.rightsinfo.
       training is included on all PGCE   colleges and univeristies last year,   org/uncoveringperiodpoverty/
       courses                      and Chancellor Philip Hammond’s

       16.        The EGO®                                                                                                                                                   The EGO®        17.
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