Posted by: richarlm | February 20, 2019

Low-income Women Unable to Afford Feminine Hygiene Products

Women's feet and legs

The following is a transcript of a recent Research That Matters piece on feminine hygiene products and low-income women.  Listen to this segment and the rest of the show “Rise in Opioid and Amphetamine Use in Pregnancy.”


Dr. Adam Goldstein:
Our last Research That Matters is what my grandmother might have called, a Yiddish word, a shonda disgrace. Its the social inequities of care and this is how it relates in healthcare. This was a major study in the journal Obstetrics & Gynecology, we’ll probably talk with our guest today about this, and it was about how poor people in the United States, poor women specifically, can’t afford tampons and pads; can’t afford the menstrual hygiene products. And it wasn’t just they can’t afford them occasionally, during the year, many can’t afford them every month and they’re making do with toilet paper or cloth or rags or diapers or paper towels. And half the women who were surveyed in a low-income, St. Louis, a low-income large city, half the women said there were times when they couldn’t afford to buy both food and these menstrual products. So clearly they went for food. And it turns out these products aren’t covered by most of the things that most low-income women might get help with such as programs like WIC, women’s and children’s assistance, they have a difficult time getting transportation to get these, buying them in bulk and products are distributed to shelters and other places for these women to get these. But it’s just really, I think, a disgrace, and this is even as early as last year, 64% of the women couldn’t afford these products, couldn’t afford them in the previous year and 21% were on a monthly basis. We must and we can do better.

You can help by donating feminine hygiene products to your local shelter or donate to the organizations below. Let us know if you have other suggestions.

What You Need to Know Before Giving to a Charity

Provided by librarians at the University of North Carolina Health Sciences Library.


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