Brown University students are returning to classes this semester to find free tampons and sanitary napkins in academic building bathrooms.
The students leading the initiative at the Ivy League school say the products are a necessity, not a luxury – an argument that’s being made across the country inefforts to stop taxing feminine hygiene products.
The products will be available in women’s, gender inclusive and men’s bathrooms in nonresidential buildings. Students wanted to offer the products in all bathrooms to be inclusive of transgender people, said Viet Nguyen, president of the Undergraduate Council of Students.
Nguyen hopes to motivate other universities and student governments to take similar actions to address this issue of equity.
“Why aren’t these products treated the same way as other products we hand out, like toilet paper?” he said. “It’s a necessity, rather than a luxury, so Brown and other universities should treat them as such.”