The State of Period Equity in the UK - In Kind Direct

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The State of Period Equity in the UK

The State of Period Equity in the UK is led by In Kind Direct, in partnership with Irise International and supported by Essity.

Through surveys and interviews, our research brings together the opinions and experiences of more than 5,000 people across the UK to reveal lifelong cycles of exclusion caused by period inequity, starting at school, continuing into the workplace and beyond.

Everyone has a role to play in lifting this hidden burden and creating a society where everyone can access the essentials they need to thrive. We have set out clear steps for policymakers, business and civil society to increase shame-free access to the right products, support and education for all, and increase local delivery of nuanced, culturally sensitive services.

Together, we can make sure no one is held back by a period.

Read the full report here

that's the cost of days of work lost because of period inequality

of those who learnt about periods in school have had to learn more since leaving education

people who went without period products in childhood also went without in adulthood

“At In Kind Direct, we believe everyone deserves access to life’s essentials. Last year, our Human Right to Hygiene report revealed the role that period inequity plays in hygiene poverty, outlining how we all have a role to play in tackling the issue.

Right now, millions of people in the UK can’t access the products, education, and shame-free support they need to manage their period each month. More than 40% of our charitable network are supporting someone who’s regularly using toilet roll instead of pads, because they can’t access the period products they need.

Our landmark report highlights the significant cost of days of work lost, and the simple steps policymakers, businesses and the general public can take to break the cycles of exclusion caused by period inequity. We ask others to join us, alongside Irise International, Essity and our Advisory Group, to ensure no one is held back by their period.”

Rosanne Gray, CEO, In Kind Direct

Resources

Bodyform's Student Resource Hub

Through a partnership with Studio You and This Girl Can, Bodyform have created a space with comprehensive resources for period education, female anatomy, and different types of period products. Access the Bodyform Student Resource Hub here

Always Parent's Corner

A space for trusted adults to access tips, advice, tools, and guidance to support children navigating the complex world of periods and puberty. Access the Always space here

Hey Girls - Period resources for youth groups

The Hey Girls Youth Group Pack includes activities on periods and period products as well as guidance for planning a period poverty campaign in your own community! Read the pack here

Girlguiding and WaterAid period poverty and stigma activity pack

WaterAid and Girlguiding have developed activity packs to get people talking openly about periods; the stigma connected to them and period poverty. Read the activity pack here

Period Product Scheme in Schools - England

The period product scheme provides free period products to pupils and students in their place of study. It is available to state-maintained schools and Department for Education funded 16-19 education organisations in England. Read more about the scheme, and how to order products for your school here

Providing period products free from shame

Some quick tips for schools and other organisations on how to provide period products in a way that is inclusive and free from shame or embarrassment. If you’re a parent or carer, how does your school’s approach to providing period products compare? Read the tips here

Free Period Products - Scotland

In 2022, Scotland began offering free period products to those who need them. Products are available across a range of locations, if you live in Scotland you can find out where you can access products here

Bloody Good Employers

Bloody Good Employers is an educational and accreditation programme run by the charity Bloody Good Period. They offer support and education for employers who are committed to promoting equality, diversity, and the rights of all workers to be treated fairly. To learn more about the programme and become a Bloody Good Employer click here

BSI Standard - Menstruation, menstrual health and menopause in the workplace

In May 2023, the British Standards Institution (BSI) issued a new standard on menstruation, menstrual health and menopause in the workplace. This standard gives guidance on developing policies and practices that are supportive of employees in the workplace experiencing menstruation or peri/menopause. Learn more and read the standard here 

Business in the Community - Menopause in the workplace toolkit

Business in the Community’s Menopause in the Workplace toolkit provides insight into how menopause impacts women in the workplace and what employers can do to help. Access the toolkit here

We would like to thank our dedicated advisory group of specialist charities, academic researchers, and those with lived experience of period inequity for their support in shaping this work.

Get in touch

If you have any questions about this research, or if you would like to learn more about our systems mapping work, please reach out here