Last Sunday, some of the Every Month gang teamed up with Hannah from Raised by Feminists to host a letter writing workshop at Partisan in Manchester. The intention was to write to local MPs to encourage them to lead Manchester in the same direction as Aberdeen and provide free sanitary products in schools, walk in centres and food banks; making them readily available to anyone who needs them. Read more about Scotland’s scheme here.
We were well prepared with a heap of letter templates, paper, felt tips, snacks and colouring in sheets for the three hour session. Everyone who dropped in had a different story to tell about why the campaign was important to them. A common experience was the lack of availability of sanitary products in school. Nearly all of the schools we had attended could provide sanitary products if you knew who to ask but it was never common knowledge among students. Another key factor was those who had asked for sanitary products were only given one, assuming that the student would only need that one because they’d have access to more at home. However, we know for many this is not the case and could lead to further problems such as poor hygiene and illness if that one free pad/tampon was used for too long. Another letter writer shared the experience of his sister who was bullied for not being able to afford pads whilst another wrote their letter because it was unbelievable that they weren’t free in schools already. The discussions on the day only fuelled the fires for the cause and we left more inspired than ever to spread the word and get more people involved. We had a the best time meeting everyone who came and shared their enthusiasm for eradicating period poverty.
If you weren’t able to join us, it’s not too late to get involved. Visit our Campaign page to sign the petition and learn who your local MP is to write to. You can also get in touch with Martha, Political Lobbying Coordinator if you have any questions. She’s also put together a great Campaign template you can use or use for inspiration for your own letter.
We will also be announcing our next Letter Writing Workshop SOON so please watch this space and our social media accounts (IG: @everymonthmcr, Facebook) Tell your pals, fam, colleagues, partners and join us for the next (there will be even more snacks, great chats, colouring in and a feminist playlist of dreamz from Hannah ). Together we will make Manchester a forerunner for period positivity and offering a better quality of life for everyone. YAS.