Government promised in 2021 election to make free tampons and pads available
Federally regulated workplaces are expected to begin offering free menstrual products to workers starting in mid-December.
Labour Minister Seamus O'Regan has announced changes to the Canada Labour Code that would ensure access to such products beginning Dec. 15.
The Liberals promised in their 2021 election campaign to make free tampons and pads available in federally regulated workplaces, and set up a fund to make menstrual products available to vulnerable people.
The changes announced Wednesday would apply to workplaces that employ about 1.3 million people, approximately 35 per cent of which, the government estimates, require menstrual products on a regular basis.
The 2022 federal budget allocated $25 million to establish a national pilot for the menstrual equity fund, which aims to help make menstrual products available to people who may not be able to afford them.
Increased awareness of "period poverty" — a term used to describe financial barriers to accessing menstrual products — has led various jurisdictions to make menstrual products more widely available.
Scotland passed a law last year to make menstrual products free for anyone who needs them.
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