Imagine how inconvenient it would be for a female student whose menstrual cycle just started, she didn’t have any products on hand, and the only place to get free products was the student health center – and she’s across campus, or the health center was closed?
Well, this was the dilemma for many female students at Florida AL&M before SGA last week passed a bill to change this.
Generation Action was the organization that brought this issue to SGA last semester.
“Generation Action is an off-shoot of Planned Parenthood,” former head coordinator of Generation Action and FAMU student, Crishelle Bailey said.
According to FAMU Campus Labs, the organization’s official name is Planned Parenthood Generation Action, or PPGenAction, and it “is a movement of young people across identities and issues that advocates with, by, and for their generation to achieve reproductive freedom.”
“[Planned Parenthood] is an organization that has three main goals … to provide comprehensive reproductive healthcare, to advocate, and to provide education to communities on campus,” Bailey added.
FA19SR-002 is the bill’s number and it is titled Female Hygiene Products. The bill states, “Be it resolved, that the Florida A & M University Student Government Association and Student Body acknowledge that feminine products should be made available across campus in women’s – and gender-neutral restrooms, and that this service should be provided free of charge by the university.”
The process of getting the bill passed was quite tedious, students said. “It included drafting and finalizing the bill, ensuring that the language explicitly expressed the need for feminine hygiene products in highly populated areas on campus,” co-outreach chair of Generation Action and FAMU student, Imani Hutchinson, said.
With the support of SGA members Maurice Gilbert, Theresa Jean Louis, and Natalie Antenor, the bill received approval in the Student Senate.
“I would like the extend a special thank you on behalf of Generation Action Planned Parenthood to them for utilizing their platform to further this faction of women’s rights on our campus,” Hutchinson said.
Junior Senator Jean Louis was one of the sponsors for the bill and she was glad to have contributed to this cause. “As a woman that stayed on campus, I understand the need for these items; thus, I’m excited to be part of something that will make a significant impact on campus, and show that we care about our students’ well-being,” she said.
Thanks to Generation Action, now there are free female hygiene products in all restrooms on campus, ready to be utilized.