The Warehouse selling sanitary products for $1 to combat period poverty

The Warehouse will be releasing a line of sanitary products retailing at $1 each to help combat 'period poverty' across New Zealand.

"Making women's hygiene products accessible to all Kiwis with our affordable $1 sanitary pads #FightingPeriodPoverty," the Kiwi retailer announced on its Facebook page last week.

The line currently offers three products: a 20-pack of regular liners, a 10-pack of regular pads and a 10-pack of super pads.

The Warehouse Group's chief product officer Tania Benyon told Stuff the $1 products are a long-term initiative and tampons will be added in the future.

The initiative has been met with praise on social media, the Facebook announcement attracting more than 5800 likes and 600 shares.

"Love this product. Yeah it's a no-frills basic product but it does the job and with a new young woman in the house it's great to be able to stock up," one woman commented.

"Wow what a great idea... personal items are so expensive because they are needed. Thank you for helping make people's lives easier," said another.

"This is awesome! Especially for young girls in high school who can't afford them," another weighed in.

A 2018 KidsCan survey found that 25 percent of young women have missed school or work due to being unable to afford sanitary items in New Zealand.

Others hoped the initiative would spark a "ripple effect" and result in more retailers following suit. 

The Warehouse also stocks the affordable sanitary brand Always Classic, with 10-packs of sensitive pads, 10-packs of normal pads and nine-packs of maxi pads retailing for $2 each.

On Thursday, the hotel chain Sudima announced it would be making organic sanitary products freely available to its staff and guests to foster a "positive conversation" around period poverty.

"We know period poverty is a real issue which can hinder low-income girls and women from regularly attending school and work as the cost of menstrual products can be prohibitive," Vedika Jhunjhnuwala, Sudima Hotels' executive director of projects, said in a statement.

"We want to make feminine hygiene products as accessible and available as any other item meant for human hygiene, like soap or toilet paper."

Ahead of International Women's Day on March 8, the company will make organic cotton pads and tampons available in all guest and staff rooms across its Auckland Airport, Rotorua, Christchurch Airport and Christchurch City branches.

During the presentation of the Positive Periods campaign in November, Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter told industry leaders that an announcement regarding New Zealand's period poverty can be expected before Budget 2020.

A petition, which gained 3500 signatures in 90 days, has urged the Government to provide free sanitary products in schools as well as menstrual health education. A task force made up of different ministries, including education and health, are working to develop solutions.

The Warehouse's $1 products are available online and in-store now.