All Students in California Will Have Access To Free Menstrual Products at School

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Emma Lolita Gutierrez, Staff Writer

California public schools and colleges will be making menstrual products free and available to all students.

This is mandated by a bill signed by Gov. Gavin Newsom this past October. 

The bill, introduced by assemblywoman Cristina Garcia, builds on her 2017 law requiring low-income schools in disadvantaged areas to provide students with free menstrual products. Free menstrual products will be given at school starting 2022-23 school year. 

Garcia stated that periods often come at inconvenient times, and making free menstrual products at school would be helpful for girls. 

“They can surprise us during an important midterm, while playing with our children at a park, sitting in a lobby waiting to interview for a job, shopping at the grocery store, or even standing on the assembly floor presenting an important piece of legislation,” Garcia said. 

Menstrual products would be as common in restrooms as toilet paper. 

“I think menstrual products should always be free no matter what in schools,” Melanie Goicochea, senior, said.

Brissa Torres, senior, agrees.

“They should have been free from the start of high school because it’s basic sanitary products and not everyone can afford to buy them,” Torres said.

Adrian Williams, senior, said he believes the products should be free for students, but not necessarily kept in the bathrooms.

“Girls should have access to it when they need it and have it in the nurse just in case of an emergency,” Williams said. He doesn’t agree with keeping them inside the bathroom because kids do immature things regardless.

Overall, most students believe that it is good that menstrual products will now be easy to access and affordable for girls in schools.

“Having free sanitary products at school should be necessary because its an essential when it comes to hygiene just like toilet paper, pads and tampons should be free,” Sara Gonzalez, senior, said