On-reserve students to receive free menstrual products “very soon” after drive organized

November 17, 2021
Federal Indigenous Services minister Patty Hajdu has announced that free menstrual products will be provided to on-reserve schools “very soon.” The announcement came after criticism was raised over the exclusion of First Nations schools from a partnership between the Government of Ontario and Shoppers Drug Mart that will provide school boards with menstrual products. Those with questions about the exclusion were directed to go to the federal government, as it funds and regulates on-reserve schools. “Young people attending First Nations schools have high needs for these products but they are being excluded,” said NDP member Sol Mamakwa, who represents an area that includes northern Ontario First Nations. Tania Cameron of the Niisaachewan Anishinaabe Nation responded to ON’s exclusion of on-reserve schools by organizing a menstrual product drive for students in northwestern Ontario First Nations. “It’s just catching like wildfire and the support from the community locally and regionally is just incredible,” said Cameron. “A student in need shouldn’t be recognized in terms of boundaries, federal [or] provincial boundaries.” CP24 | The Globe and Mail | CBC (ON)