the bloody truth
Throughout history, periods have been hidden from the public. They're taboo. They're embarrassing. They're gross. And due to a crumbling or non-existent national sex ed program, they are misunderstood. And because of these stigmas, a status quo has been establish to exclude people who menstruate from the seat at the decision-making table, creating discriminations like the tampon tax, medicines that favor male biology, and more.
It’s 2019. People have been menstruating since the beginning of human kind, and menstruation makes human life possible. And yet, 35 states in the US still have a sales tax on period products considering them luxury items, while products like Rogaine and Viagra are considered essential goods. 1 in 4 women struggled to afford period products in the last year, due to a lack of income.
who they are?
Nadya Okamota, is a 19-year-old Harvard sophomore who founded PERIOD at the age of 16. Period is now the largest youth-run organization in women's health having addressed over 510,000 periods for homeless menstruators, & registered almost 400 campus chapters at universities & high schools.
Last October, Okamoto published her debut book, Period Power: a manifesto for the Menstrual Movement. Period Power is a daring and inclusive manifesto, aiming to explain what menstruation is and addressing how veiled language around periods have kept people disenfranchised. Okamoto creates a strategy to end the silence and prompt conversation about periods, discussing practical actions & ways to demand change.
PERIOD is a group of young activists across the U.S. united by the belief that menstrual care is a basic right. Nadya Okamoto and Vincent Forand co-founded PERIOD as high school students in 2014 after realizing that menstrual products are not reliably available to those who need them the most. They now have have a nationwide network of over 300 chapters who are serving their communities.
PERIOD is fighting to end period poverty and the period stigma. They believe that menstrual hygiene is a right, not a privilege -- that every person should be able to discover and reach their full potential, regardless of a natural need.