Douglas fights period poverty with free menstrual products on campus. You may have noticed the College has installed menstrual product dispensers in every washroom—women's, gender-inclusive and men's. Students and employees now have access to free menstrual products. With this, the College joins a rising movement in post-secondary schools across B.C. to fight period poverty, or lack of access to menstrual products. Until now, students and employees could access coin-dispensed menstrual products in select washrooms on campus, or through the Douglas Students' Union (DSU) who offered a free supply in their building at the New Westminster Campus and at their kiosk at the Coquitlam Campus.
A comprehensive proposal to introduce free campus-wide menstrual products was brought forward by the DSU, citing research on the academic impact of period poverty. This research included a joint study from Dr. Selina Tribe and Dr. Lisa Smith, two Douglas College instructors, who found that 49% of participating post-secondary students had lost notable class time in the past because they didn't have the menstrual products they needed. The menstrual collection will grow as it adds the voices and work of emerging and established scholars (student and faculty) in the field of critical menstruation studies with an eye for the Canadian context.