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Ards and North Down know menstruation matters, says Douglas

Alliance Councillor Karen Douglas has proved menstruation matters, as Ards and North Down back her plans to see sanitary products provided within local schools and colleges free of charge.

At a recent Council meeting Karen secured support to write to the Department of Education to ask for the products to be put in place as a matter of urgency to tackle period poverty in the borough.

She said: "Periods are a natural part of a female's life. Yet in many societies we are ashamed to talk about it. So I want to shine a spotlight on the issue and state clearly that menstruation matters and that as a Council we are prepared to play our part in tackling the issue of 'period poverty' for those of whom it affects in our Borough.

"Across the UK in recent years period poverty has become a real concern, with Scotland leading the way with the introduction of a pilot offering females free sanitary products. And while schools in England are considering a similar move, in Northern Ireland many young females remain abandoned in this regard.

"Feminine hygiene products are a necessity, but a key issue is one of affordability, with recent research detailing more than 12 percent have had to improvise due to costs, while around 19 percent have changed to a less suitable sanitary product due to cost.

"It is important that our female citizens can live with dignity and decency in our society, which is why I'm delighted that my Council colleagues have recognised the need to do something and backed my plans."