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Schools and colleges in England are being prompted to order their free period products now to help combat period inequality.
Period product supplier phs Direct has announced that nearly 40% of eligible schools and colleges have ordered free products, funded by the Department for Education as part of the scheme to tackle period inequality. However, the clock is ticking for the remaining educational organisations to place their orders for this year’s budget allocation before the end of the autumn term.
Warren Edmondson, managing director of phs Direct which is part of facilities services provider phs Group, said: “It is fantastic that nearly 40% of schools and colleges have already ordered their free period products, helping provide access to students who need it and working towards creating period equality for all. This figure is particularly encouraging since there was only a matter of weeks between the scheme launching in January and the mass closures of schools and colleges across the country. Positively, throughout lockdown significant numbers continued to order free products with many of these creating school drop-in points for collection or providing care packages for learners staying at home.
“Schools and colleges who have not yet placed their orders are being encouraged to do so ahead of the deadline of the end of the autumn term. Providing free period products to students who need them is a fantastic initiative and is a major stride in the fight against period inequality. Educational organisations must now play their part in claiming their free products and getting them to the frontline, providing the free access which for some is so desperately needed.”
More than 20,000 schools and colleges in England are eligible for the DfE period products scheme, giving free and easy access to young people who need them. There is a choice of free period products available ranging from pads and tampons to environmentally-friendly pads, non-applicator and cardboard-applicator tampons as well as reusable pads and menstrual cups – all designed to reduce plastic waste and limit its environmental impact.
Mr Edmondson added: “With all schools and colleges set to open in September, we expect orders to rise considerably and we are prepared for this. We are fully stocked with millions of period products just waiting to be ordered with contactless delivery. The message from us is loud and clear – order now to help ensure no young person suffers because of a lack of access to such a basic necessity as period products.”
To access their free products, schools and colleges have had an activation email from phs which includes information on how to log on to the portal and order. For support, schools and colleges can get in touch with phs Direct by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling the helpline on 01827 255500.
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