EAST LANSING, Mich. — Michigan State University's student government is calling on the administration to supply free menstrual products to all bathrooms on campus with a new bill they hope will boost access to menstrual care for transgender and gender non-conforming students.
“As a nonbinary person myself, I saw that this was an equity issue,” Associated Students of Michigan State University Representative Jordan Kovach said.
“People who identify as nonbinary, trans, anyone can menstruate. So, with that in mind, I think it’s important that this bill advocates for these menstrual products to be in all bathrooms on campus,” ASMSU Representative Cynthia Sridhar said.
ASMSU unanimously passed Bill 58-14 which calls for free period products in all on-campus bathrooms.
“This is a project we’ve been working on for some years now, we’ve been offering period products in female bathrooms but we’re very open to supplying them to all bathrooms and working with students to make that happen,” MSU spokesperson Emily Guerrant said.
Students have been working on the issue of access to period care products on campus since at least 2018 with the start of an initiative known as “Mission Menstruation.” Student groups say they hope MSU will follow the example of other campuses.
“Some Ivy League universities have started putting products in all of their bathrooms due to student requests,” Sridhar said.
The bill calls on the university to introduce period product dispensers in all bathrooms on campus and maintain them and keep the supply consistent year-round.
“Now that we’re coming out of the pandemic and it’s caused such emotional and financial hardship on families, access to hygiene products for all students is so important,” Sridhar said.
Advocates hope to have products in all bathrooms by the time students return to campus for the fall semester.