Sunshine and Showers

Sunshine and Showers

max temp: 7°C

min temp: 5°C


Suffolk vow to tackle period poverty fails to put cash towards free tampons in schools

PUBLISHED: 19:08 18 October 2018 | UPDATED: 19:08 18 October 2018

From left to right: Miss Myfanwy Cooper, Lara Fordham, Suffolk county councillor Jack Abbott, Evie Harrison, councillor Helen Armitage and Alex Mayer MEP Picture: SUFFOLK COUNTY COUNCIL LABOUR GROUP

From left to right: Miss Myfanwy Cooper, Lara Fordham, Suffolk county councillor Jack Abbott, Evie Harrison, councillor Helen Armitage and Alex Mayer MEP Picture: SUFFOLK COUNTY COUNCIL LABOUR GROUP

Suffolk County Council Labour Group

Suffolk County Council has vowed to tackle period poverty – but fell short of committing cash to the cause.

The council’s Labour group put forward a motion to Thursday’s full council meeting calling for £15,000 investment in tampons and sanitary towels at all local authority schools specifically for girls who could not afford them.

It also called for the council to encourage academies, colleges and pupil referral units to provide the same, and asked for council leader Matthew Hicks to write to central government demanding VAT be removed from sanitary products.

But an amendment tabled by the Conservative group was instead approved, that said its public health team would instead promote existing projects which tackle period poverty such as Lowestoft Rising and a pilot by Suffolk Libraries.

The amendment failed to pledge any funding, which led to five councillors voting against the proposals and 16 abstaining.

Councillor Helen Armitage, Labour spokeswoman for health, said: “It’s not particularly unexpected but a little bit disappointing that for such a small amount of money the council couldn’t commit.

“The amount of support we have had outside of this chamber has been amazing, from quite young girls all the way up to top businesswomen.”

Ms Armitage said she would be continuing to pursue measures that could help girls suffering from period poverty, with plans to set up boxes at the county council where tampons and sanitary towels can be donated.

Conservative councillor Mary Evans, who proposed the amended motion, said the original would only support a minority of girls as it would only be in local authority schools, describing it as “a small amount of cash for a small amount of girls”.

She added: “I believe there shouldn’t be any barrier to education or indeed playing a full part in active life.

“We want our public health team to lead on this and promote and share best practice across the county.”

Green councillor Elfrede Brambley-Crawshaw said the failure to commit cash to the cause “says to our young girls we do not value them”.

“If the girls today were watching this I think it would make them quite upset knowing their council could not pay this small amount of money.”

Police have released CCTV footage of a vicious and apparently unprovoked attack on a woman at the edge of Ipswich town centre earlier this month.

The first stage towards spending a further £3m on improving Ipswich town centre is likely to be signalled by councillors next week.

Horses on the loose, Black Friday deals and Ipswich’s battle against drug dealers - find the top Suffolk and Essex stories in one place.

Black Friday might not be quite here yet, but many retailers with stores in Suffolk and north Essex have already unveiled offers, with some expanding the day into a week or even more.

Children and young people are almost 90% less likely to be cautioned or convicted for a first offence in Suffolk than a decade ago, according to new figures.

Suffolk’s mental health and wellbeing system is failing and people are struggling to access support they need – even in moments of crisis.

Forecasters recommend hats and scarves for high street shoppers looking for Black Friday deals as the next few days are set to be chilly.

A couple who lost their baby son at just 18 days old are throwing themselves behind a campaign aiming to brighten children’s lives at Christmas time.

It was announced today that a further consultation will be held into the Sizewell C project in the new year. Ahead of this next step we lay out all the things you need to know about the project and its potential impact on the local area.

Comedian Griff Rhys Jones has invited an 11-year-old boy receiving care at a Suffolk hospice to visit him and his pet alpacas.

Most read

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Newsletter Sign Up

Ipswich Star daily newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

MyDate24 MyPhotos24