International Women's Day marked with renewed call for period products to be free

There are renewed calls for making period products free this International Women's Day.

Almost a quarter of women in a 2018 KidsCan survey said they have missed school or work because they were unable to afford sanitary items.

Vedika Jhunjhnuwala, social advocate and executive director at Sudima Hotels, says people take period poverty for granted.

"People who may not have pads and tampons may not be able to go to work or school and people should be thinking about what they can do to change that," she told Newshub. 

Sudima announced in February it would be making organic sanitary products freely available to its staff and guests to foster a "positive conversation" around period poverty and remove the shame.

"Kids always follow what they see, so if society talk about it more openly and is more comfortable with it, I think that will echo with our kids." 

In late February 2020, The Warehouse announced it will release a line of sanitary products retailing at $1 each to help combat "'period poverty" across New Zealand.

Jhunjhnuwala says she hopes New Zealand follows Scotland's lead and put forward a Bill which will see women get the products free.