Knowing and having access to all the possibilities for dealing with periods is a matter of comfort and improved sanitation, and a means for achieving body integrity and increased opportunity. Menstruating individuals deserve choices—so let’s unpack them!
Feminists in Los Angeles Monday celebrated the growing momentum for women’s equality worldwide, from the menstrual equity movement taking shape across the globe to the re-invigorated push for ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment sweeping the U.S., at the Feminist Majority Foundation’s 14th annual Global Women’s Rights Awards.
I co-founded Diva International in 2001 with the vision of creating a viable alternative to disposable tampons and pads—the DivaCup. But 17 years later, our mission has expanded beyond just selling a product.
What do recent victories for menstrual equity worldwide suggest for the future of the movement?
Australia’s feminist superheroes won an 18-year battle against a “luxury tax.”
In today’s treacherous landscape for reproductive health, one policy priority has skirted partisan rancor: periods.
The Oscar-winning documentary short “Period. End of Sentence.” follows women and girls in rural India through a time of quiet rebellion as they launch their own pad-making enterprise. But menstrual equity isn’t just a fight happening somewhere else.
Rayka Zehtabchi stands out in this year’s pool of Academy Award nominees for Best Documentary Short—not only because she’s the only woman among them, but because her film “PERIOD. END OF SENTENCE.” also tells a uniquely female story that emerged from a transnational feminist coalition fighting for menstrual equity.
Ratifying the Equal Rights Amendment goes beyond a matter of principle. It would also offer a host of legal remedies to gender-based disparities, including discrimination in the workplace and the injustices that face survivors in our rape culture—and it would be a major boon to the emerging movement for menstrual equity.
Today is Menstrual Hygiene Day—which we’re reclaiming here at Ms. as Menstrual Equity Day! That’s why we’re kicking back to watch “Keep Calm and Tampon,” the short musical directed, written and acted entirely by women that celebrates every single menstruator who takes on the patriarchy, everyday sexism and even the state in their fight for equality.