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Washington University Danforth Campus

An Update On Washington University’s Free Period Product Programs Across Campus

Original article written by Tanvi Gorre and Kate Theerman Rodriguez, Staff Writer and Contributing Writer 

Three years after Washington University rolled out programs to increase student access to period products, students and administrators are pushing for increased awareness of menstrual issues and access.  

Multiple programs currently exist to offer access to period products for students. In 2021, the University launched Go Green for Red, a program funded by Congress of the South 40 (CS40) that gives students free, reusable period products. In the same year, the University made pads and tampons available for free in bathrooms on both the Danforth Campus and Medical Campus

Nationwide, student groups are pushing for free menstrual product programs at their respective universities and the University is one of the first to establish these programs. Student leaders on campus hope to see more period product dispensers placed and maintained in women’s and all-gender bathrooms on the medical and Danforth campuses in the upcoming years. 

First-year Scoot Wang, co-founder of not-for-profit Lotus and a Student Union senator who is on SU’s Diversity & Inclusion committee, said they hope to see period products distributed outside of the women’s bathroom in the next stages of the program. 

We want to ensure the restocking of period product dispensaries and the expansion of the locations at WashU, not only in female bathrooms, but also expand to gender-neutral bathrooms and high-traffic men’s bathrooms.

Scoot Wang

Wang said that some people see menstrual product accessibility as a female-only issue and hopes to see this ideological barrier dismantled in the next iterations of the free menstrual products program on campus. 

“It’s not about your sex or your gender,” Wang said. “I want to encourage more people to learn about menstrual stigma and poverty.”

Speaker of SU Senate, sophomore Sonal Churiwal said it is time for the various period product programs on campus to take a broader perspective of who a menstruating person can be.

I definitely appreciate the initial setup of the project, but I think it’s important for us to veer toward a more inclusive take.

Sonal Churiwal

The Menstrual Hygiene Products Program on the Medical Campus is also seeing changes in its program. Michelle Lewis, director of the Operations & Facilities Management Department,  said that it is standard practice to add free menstrual products in the construction of new all-gender bathrooms.

Having this conversation out in the open that we have these dispensers across campus does help destigmatize. We want to advocate for our employees and students’ health to foster a healthier community.

Michelle Lewis

Read the full story here!

Stay in the flow — we’ll send you period positivity + timely updates on the menstrual movement.

claire coder,founder + ceo

claire coder,
founder + ceo

Hi! I’m Claire. I founded Aunt Flow after getting my period in public without the supplies needed.

At 18 years old, I dedicated my life to developing a solution to ensure businesses and schools could sustainably provide quality period products, for free, in bathrooms. Our products are made with organic cotton and we are constantly working to reduce our environmental impact! Since 2021, we've donated over 6 MILLION period products to menstruators in need. I call this people helping people. PERIOD.®

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