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Man ridiculed for calling period poverty 'nonsense' and telling women to buy £1 sanitary towels

'Us girls ALWAYS enjoy men lecturing us about the cost of sanitary wear'

Sarah Young
Monday 15 April 2019 15:04 BST
Labour MP Danielle Rowley addresses period poverty in Commons

A Twitter user has been criticised online after dismissing period poverty as “nonsense” and telling women to use budget £1 sanitary products.

On Saturday, property developer Marcus Stead shared an article regarding the news that free sanitary products are to be given to girls in primary and secondary schools in Wales.

Taking mansplaining to new heights, Stead decided to wade in on the debate regarding the need for free menstrual products, writing: “Can we please stop all this nonsense about people not being able to ‘afford’ to give their children breakfast or sanitary products?

“A bag of porridge to feed a family for a week costs £1. 3 packs of sanitary towels cost £1 in Home Bargains [sic].”

The tweet has since gone viral, receiving more than 2,600 likes, 873 retweets and more than 4,000 comments.

Stead's unsolicited advice hasn't gone down well on Twitter, with many women pointing out that his advice doesn’t take into account heavy flows or medical advice regarding toxic shock syndrome (TSS), which suggests women should change their tampon every three to four hours.

“Oh how wonderful - a man who has never had a period is here to tell us how to deal with our periods cheaper [sic],” one person commented.

“When the cheap pads get soaked through because they're crap and we're bleeding all over the place it's fine because at least we've saved money, right? Oh & btw: F*** OFF.”

Another added: “Us girls ALWAYS enjoy men lecturing us about the cost of sanitary wear cos until you've used very cheapest sanitary wear, you'll have no idea what it's like.”

Others took issue with the fact that he presumed to understand what it’s like to live in poverty.

“Can we stop this nonsense where privileged f***faces throw shade and judge people less fortunate than them while it's perfectly clear they couldn't survive a week in their shoes?” one person wrote.

Another agreed, adding: “Can we please stop all this nonsense about ignorant t***s who CAN afford things thinking they know what people who can't afford things actually go through on a daily basis?”

However not everyone disagreed with Stead’s comments, with some social media users coming to his defence.

“OMG thank you so much for saying this. I so agree. Anyone who can't afford these things need help with budgeting or priorities [sic],” one person commented.

The disagreement follows news that the Welsh government will be funding a £2.3m scheme to ensure free sanitary products are given to girls in primary and secondary schools.

The Scottish government’s funding of free sanitary products in all schools, colleges and universities commenced last year, while a similar scheme is expected to be introduced for English secondary schools from September.

The new Welsh government grant will provide more than 141,000 female students with a range of sanitary products free of charge.

The change follows a two-year campaign led by teenage activist Amika George who created a petition called #FreePeriods, after it was revealed that more than 137,700 children in the UK have missed school because of period poverty.

Similarly, 40 per cent of girls in the UK admitted to using toilet roll because they couldn’t afford menstrual products.

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