Fanshawe’s Student Union is excited to introduce something that has never been done inside of Fanshawe before. As of Monday September 17th, FSU made a new initiative that provides free menstrual products in women and gender neutral washrooms.
Jahmoyia Smith, the president of the Student Union, is one of the individuals who helped pass this new project, and is proud of where they are and FSU has an idea of where they want this action to go.
“We want the word out to students that we’re here, and we support them,” Smith says, “and this all ties back into academic success. And whatever we can do to ensure that all of our students are successful while they’re here, we’re definitely going to do it.”
The president wants the free pads and tampons to be provided throughout the entire college, since right now the free products are only in The Outback Shack and in the Student Center. The Student Union is different from the college, and therefore, Smith is hoping that the college will see the initiative and want to take part in the project.
For students who may be struggling financially, or just need a product in a desperate time of need, it’s important to have the option.
“I feel like it’s important,” Smith starts, “because when you look at the stats, you look at the numbers and the research, over 300,000 students across the world have to miss school because they can’t afford these products. And then again, it’s a natural human course. I feel like we shouldn’t have to have the burden of having to pay for it.”
Jahmoyia adds that not having menstrual products should never affect anyone’s academic career.
Not only are those in the Student Union happy about this project, but so are the students. Spectrum is a club in the college whose focus is to create a safe and positive space for LGBTQ2+ students to meet and interact with their peers and executive member, Vivianne Quang, is also happy about the new initiative.
“I think it’s awesome actually!” She says. “I think financial barriers are completely real for college students, and the facts that FSU has taken away that barrier, I think it’s super important.”
The initiative is a great start from where they were before it. But Quang thinks additions could be made.
“I think it would be interesting if they put it in the men’s room because there are trans men at the school who use the men’s room and can still menstruate.”
Fanshawe’s Student Union is hoping for positive responses from students and staff from this first time initiative.