Schools providing period products in restrooms


Amarie Quintero

Dispensers like this are now available in every girls’ bathroom on campus, thanks to the Menstrual Equity for All Act. Tampons and pads are both available.

For many teen girls, and women in general, there’s nothing worse than being on your period and not having a pad or tampon. Thanks to Assemblymember Cristina Garcia who introduced the Menstrual Equity for All Act, Assembly Bill (AB) 367, menstrual products are now much easier for Californians to access in public places. 

While AB 367 made them accessible in public places, like public parks and public schools, menstrual products were not provided in high schools until 2017. On October 12, 2017, Assembly Bill 10, also known as AB10, was passed by Jerry Brown, then governor of California, enforced that menstrual products needed to be provided in public schools.

Last year, when menstrual products still weren’t provided at school, Nelly Dominguez said that she would have to go home when an emergency occurred. “Students should not have to go home because of an incident that can easily be fixed if the resources were there.’’

Many other students have also had the same experiences with trying to deal with a way to find menstrual products when none of their friends had any on hand. But now that schools have enforced stations in the school bathrooms, it makes it much easier for students to have access to them. 

But because these stations are still so new, keeping up with restocking can be difficult. At times some restrooms are fully stocked while others are empty. Liz Saldana said that, “I had got my period one time and went to the 1000s restroom but they didn’t have any pads left, so I had to go all the way to the main building restroom to get a pad. Good thing I wasn’t heavy.”  

According to the Plant Foreman, Richard Esparza, the reason some restrooms are stocked and others aren’t  is due to the custodian shortage. Esparza said he tries his best to restock everything in the restrooms, but sometimes fails to fully refill them. He said they are working on trying to get more custodians, but for now they are trying their best to restock what they can. 

There are also menstrual products in one of  the boys’ restrooms for transgender students. Esparza said they are only in one restroom because the school is afraid that the boys will just find a way to mess with the products and waste them.

Students aren’t the only ones who have to struggle with what to do the day their periods come unexpectedly, staff members were also given this dispenser put next to their restrooms so they all have easy access to the menstrual products when needed. Andrea Agredo said, ‘’I’m happy that the school is finally providing menstrual products but wish they had a better range of sizes and brands.’’ Many students agree that the schools should have a wider range of products because not everyone likes or uses the same products.

Overall, students feel this is a positive change. Senior Jizelle Guzman said providing menstrual products was an “essential input to our school restrooms.”