Clovis High Students Get Free Access to Feminine Hygiene Products

Natalie Jones, Reporter

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Ladies, say farewell to awkward and embarrassing period situations. A new law was passed in California at the start of 2018 requiring public schools serving students 6-12th grade to provide free pads and tampons in half of the bathrooms. Clovis High recently came in compliance with the new laws, and installed free feminine hygiene dispensers in some of the bathrooms.

Prior to the new law, the girls bathroom had feminine hygiene dispensers that were not free, and hardly stocked.

Carrie Carter, the CHS deputy principal, said, “The old ones required money, and were very specific in the sizes of products that could fit inside. The new ones can fit different sizes and brands, and students do not have to pay.”

Senior Kelly Crouch was thrilled about Clovis high taking action by providing students access to free feminine hygiene products.

“When I first walked into the bathroom and saw the new tampon dispensers, I thought it was the best idea ever. When a girl is in need of a tampon, you have to get one,” Crouch said.

The new law only applies to schools whose student body falls below the poverty rate of 40 percent. Clovis Unified meets this standard, but Clovis High is above the poverty rate, sitting at 43%. Despite not having to be in compliance with the new law, Clovis Unified decided to implement the new law at every district high school, qualifying or not.

“Clovis Unified decided to put all of the schools in compliance with the new law by choice,” said Carter. “Clovis Unified feels that if it is good for some kids, it is good for all kids.”

Clovis High has always had free feminine hygiene products available for students in the nurse’s, and PE office.

“Some students get embarrassed to ask for a tampon or pad,” Carter said.“With the new dispensers students don’t have to ask their teachers for a pass to go the nurse’s office for a tampon, they can just go to a restroom without having to ask.”

Crouch agrees with Carter.

“Sometimes if a girl doesn’t have a tampon in their backpack, forget, or need one for an emergency, it is already available in the bathroom. It is awesome,” Crouch said. “You don’t have to be uncomfortable asking other people for one or going to the nurses. You can just go to the bathroom and it is there for you.”

Since the dispensers and feminine hygiene products are the district’s expense, Clovis High had to be selective about which bathrooms to install the new dispensers.

“We looked to see which bathrooms are not open over the weekend,” Carter said, “Clovis High hosts so many sporting events, that some of the bathrooms are open to the public. Since it is a district expense we wanted to make sure that Clovis High students have the necessary supplies available for them.”

Crouch commented on the room for abuse that comes with providing free tampons to students.

“I have not seen anybody abuse the access to free tampons. I sure hope no one has. Hopefully students aren’t taking it for granted, and only taking what they need,” Crouch said.

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Clovis High Students Get Free Access to Feminine Hygiene Products