Period poverty: 130,000 teens from B40 families given hygiene kits, says Siti Zailah

KUALA LUMPUR: A total of 130,000 teenagers from the lower income (B40) group have received feminine hygiene kits, says Datuk Siti Zailah Yusoff.

The Deputy Women, Family and Community Development Minister said the Federal Government has allocated a total of RM10mil for the initiative under Budget 2022 with RM3mil going to the Women, Family and Community Development Ministry and another RM7mil channeled to the Home Ministry.

The teenagers, who are also students from 1,024 secondary schools in urban and rural areas, will also be guided on feminine hygiene and reproductive health.

She said the sanitary pads will be supplied for a period of 12 months in phases through the district education department.

Siti Zailah added that the first phase of the distribution was completed on June 30.

“The second phase for the next eight months will be distributed to the same teenagers by the Prisons Department,” she said during the oral question and answer session in the Dewan Rakyat on Monday (Aug 1).

She added that reusable sanitary pads were given to 3,000 teenagers in rural areas which includes 800 Orang Asli teenagers.

She was responding to a question by Lukanisman Awang Sauni (GPS-Sibuti) on the status of the monthly assistance of free basic personal hygiene kits to 130,000 B40 female teenagers as tabled in Budget 2022 and whether the assistance reached female teenagers in rural and remote areas as well as Orang Asli communities.

“We prioritise the use of reusable pads for teenagers in rural areas who have limited access to shops where they can get supplies,” she said.

She said this in response to a supplementary question by Fuziah Salleh (PH-Kuantan) on expanding the use of reusable pads.

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