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Halifax libraries join nationwide movement towards free menstrual products

Halifax Public Libraries offering free menstrual products
WATCH: The products are being provided in washrooms. As Alexa MacLean reports, the improved access is a result of advocates highlighting period poverty.

Public library branches in Halifax will provide free menstrual products in washrooms, as the city considers distributing them for free at all municipal facilities.

Asa Kachan, chief librarian and CEO for Halifax Public Libraries, says the 14 branches have been discreetly providing the products for years to patrons who asked for them.

READ MORE: Why a new blood drop emoji could help smash period stigmas

Kachan says they’ve decided to provide dignity for anyone who found the need to ask a barrier, by putting the products in washrooms.

She says it’s about meeting a need when not everyone can afford to purchase menstrual products.

READ MORE: United Way Halton and Hamilton launch Period Promise initiative and product drive

Halifax councillor Lorelei Nicoll moved a motion last month asking city staff to explore the distribution of free menstrual products like tampons and pads at facilities such as community centres, pools, and arenas.

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Nicoll says she hopes the idea is now seen as a “no brainer,” given the libraries’ initiative.