Surrey is first County in England to support Weybridge based Binti’s Dignity At Work Initiative, to provide Free Period Products
Look out for the #Binti stickers in Weybridge Library and other Surrey libraries as it’ll mean that free period products are provided in that library. There is no need to ask – simply go to the collection box and help yourself, or donate.
Binti International is a charitable organisation that provides menstrual products and education to girls and women across the UK, India, US and Africa whilst, eradicating the stigma and taboo associated with periods.
Our vision: To create a world where all women have menstrual dignity.
Binti’s Dignity At Work Campaign
Surrey County Council are launching a groundbreaking initiative to provide free period products across the county and be the first to eradicate period stigma.
Partnering with award winning Weybridge based period charity, Binti International, the initiative is the first of its kind and sets a precedent for future counties in England to follow suit.
The access to the free products is only half the story. Binti’s Dignity At Work campaign is impactful because it ensures access to products to those that need them and works towards removing the stigma attached to periods.
Surrey County Council are tackling the issue head on by ensuring that there is support for girls and women across the county, to ease the challenges and ensure that everyone can menstruate with dignity.
More about the Dignity At Work campaign on the Binti website. To sign up to Dignity At Work, please email Binti using the address in the contacts section below
“I’m delighted this initiative is launching and it’s something we’re very proud to be a part of. Period products should be available to anybody who needs them, and it’s great that Surrey is leading the way in making this a reality. We would hate to think anybody would suffer in silence without access to these products for fear of shame or indignity. That absolutely should not be the case, and we hope that this initiative is an important step towards eradicating that stigma.”
Surrey County Council, will be launching Binti’s Period Dignity campaign which will see;
- Free period pads available across the county for anyone who needs them
- A marketing campaign designed specifically to eradicate period stigma and normalise the menstrual conversation
- Donation points where residents can donate pads to the scheme.
The Stigma / Perceived Shame
A common barrier women face is tackling the stigma attached to talking about periods. Women still hide products up their sleeves, have code words for menstrual cycles or whisper about them when discussing them with friends.
Over the years, manufacturers have perpetuated the shame by using blue liquid to show absorbency of products.
They have created marketing campaigns with sub conscious messages, to encourage secrecy because nobody should know that anyone is menstruating.
Why is eradicating the stigma around periods vital?
Most women in the UK use toilet paper to manage their periods in between buying period products.
A ground-breaking survey by period product manufacturer TOTM in February 2020,* revealed the impact of also not having period products in the workplace. When asked how they felt in that situation, the results were;
– 80% said they worry about their period at work
– 80% said their offices didn’t have a period product vending machine.
– 76% said their period had disrupted their working day
Challenging the stigma and taboos
Binti International believes that creating safe spaces to challenge the stigma and taboos will help in improving women’s health long term.
In order to tackle this, Binti has designed a marketing campaign with stickers that will show which organisation, office and/or public building, openly support those who are menstruating.
They will be used akin to the ‘credit cards accepted here’ stickers placed on doors and windows of businesses that show free period products are available.
The key to the campaign is to be a proud supporter of letting people menstruate with dignity. This means that anyone can walk into one of the locations across Surrey and have access to pads.
The free period products will be available in clearly displayed Binti red boxes
(see photo above).
Having them openly on display with easy access helps eliminate the social awkwardness around periods and at the same time, allows those who need them, to get them without difficulty.
There is no means testing, and Surrey County Council believe that Binti’s period dignity campaign should become policy for all organisations to provide free period products.
Although Binti is the main provider of the period products, it is, as a charity, also dependent on donations. As such, there will be donation bins throughout the same locations where people can donate products to the cause.
As part of the initiative, Binti have launched an app which will show all the places across Surrey that people can access free products.
“Surrey County Council is proud to be involved in this initiative in partnership with Binti International to provide equal access to pads so no girl or woman need suffer the indignity of managing their period without period products.
We hope that Surrey residents will support this great initiative by donating products, and that businesses across the county will do so by providing products for their female employees, so that more and more collection and donation points across Surrey can be provided.
It’s time for period dignity across Surrey”.
“As we celebrate our 7th year and for MENSTRUAL HEALTH DAY 28th of MAY, we are delighted to announce this new campaign with Surrey County Council.
As the first period charity in the UK, our grass root level conversations have taught us that deep rooted barriers to breaking stigmas attached to periods, are shared by all communities in one way or another.
It’s been good to see organisations raising awareness of poverty with periods in the UK and offering free pads, especially in the pandemic.
However, the provision of free period products satisfies the immediacy of the need, this isn’t a catalyst for change if it’s not partnered with normalising the period discussion.
We have to be brave enough to challenge the reason behind the shame that leads to so many women and girls suffering in silence – not talking about it.
Our Dignity At Work campaign is groundbreaking because on the one hand we normalise the provision of period products in all public spaces and secondly, we encourage conversation about the big elephant in the room.
Let’s end period stigma and expect period products everywhere”.