The government has stepped up its commitment to ending period poverty in the UK by forming a taskforce to combat the problem.
Plan International UK, a children's charity which campaigns for equality for girls, and Procter & Gamble, owner of menstrual hygiene brands Tampax and Always, have been appointed as co-chairs of the taskforce.
Plan International UK has already played an incredibly important part in highlighting the fact that period poverty in the UK is a widespread issuer. Their 2017 study found that one in 10 girls have been unable to afford sanitary products.
The study also found that similar number have had to "improvise" their sanitary wear, using things like socks, T-shirts or tissue paper.
The new period poverty taskforce was announced by Penny Mordaunt MP, the Minister for Women and Equalities, ahead of Menstrual Hygiene Day on Tuesday (28th May).
"For too long women and girls in the UK have faced unnecessary adversity around their periods, that is why we have formed this new taskforce," Mordant said in a statement.
"Our two new co-chairs, Plan International UK and Procter & Gamble, have already produced impressive work around the country to improve access to period products and change old-fashioned attitudes to menstruation and break down taboos. Now, working together on the period poverty taskforce, we can take action to create a strong and viable solution to period poverty in the UK."
Tanya Barron, Plan International UK's chief executive, added: "This is a golden opportunity to tackle the root causes of period poverty here in the UK, namely the high-cost of period products, lack of education and the stigma and shame that surrounds periods."
The new taskforce follows the government's pledge to provide free sanitary products in all secondary schools and colleges in England. This was announced by Chancellor Phillip Hammond in his March budget, along with a £2 million fund to combat period poverty both at home and abroad.
The Welsh government made moves to tackle period poverty by setting aside a £1 million fund in March 2018. Scotland announced a similar scheme in August of that year, making sanitary products available free to all pupils to help "banish the scourge of period poverty".