Schools in Illinois are adjusting to a new state-mandated rule that takes effect next week. Starting in January, they’ll be required to provide feminine hygiene products to students at no cost.
The law, known as the “Learn With Dignity Act,” applies to every public school that teaches grades 6 though 8.
“Access to feminine hygiene products is a serious and ongoing need in this state,” the bill’s text reads. “When students do not have access to affordable feminine hygiene products, they miss multiple days of school every month. When students have access to feminine hygiene products, they are able to continue with their daily lives with minimal interruption.”
To that end, tampons and pads will be available in school bathrooms free of charge (instead of in the nurse’s office, as has been the norm in the past). But according to the Champaign-based News-Gazette, the transition isn’t smooth sailing for some school districts, which have to foot the cost of the change of their own:
"We don't have an issue with students missing school because of this, and now we have to spend $500, $600 on these machines," said Monticello Superintendent Vic Zimmerman. "I think it's a bit overstepping on the state legislature's part."
Read the rest of the story from reporter Natalie Wickman on the News-Gazette's website:
Local districts are adjusting to a new state requirement that takes effect Monday - providing free feminine hygiene products in school bathrooms.Known as the Learn with Dignity Act, the amendment to Illinois' school code was approved by Gov. Bruce Rauner on Aug. 18 and cosponsored by state Rep. Carol Ammons (D-Urbana).