Sydney could become first city in Australia with free tampons for women

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Sydney could become the first city in Australia to offer free tampons, with a councillor saying it made sense for the cashed up council to role out the plan.

Sydney City council is due to vote on Monday on a proposal which would supply homeless women, as well as those in council owned buildings and sporting facilities with the sanitary products.

Councillor Edward Mandla said it was a worthy program for the well-funded council.

Councillor Edward Mandla. Photo: Supplied
Councillor Edward Mandla. Photo: Supplied

"City of Sydney is flush with cash and throws around money like there's no tomorrow,” The Huffington Post quoted Cr Mandla saying.

“There's money for everyone and lots of talk about equality. But there's little in practical leadership solutions," Mandla said.


In his notice of motion for Monday’s council meeting, Cr Mandla said the move would help inspire “Australian organisations to join the City by providing free and easily accessible sanitary items in their bathrooms, in this instance, in all City of Sydney workplaces, for all City of Sydney staff”.

Under his plan, libraries, sporting and homeless facilities would also offer free tampons.

He cited similar moves in the US which would see some states introduce free female sanitary products in public buildings.

Cr Mendla also referenced US statistics which suggested 86 per cent of woman had been “caught without the supplies they need in a public space, 79 per cent of women said they were forced to improvise
with toilet paper”

Mayor Clover Moore's vote could prove crucial to Cr Mendla's plan. Photo: AAP
Mayor Clover Moore's vote could prove crucial to Cr Mendla's plan. Photo: AAP

He said the policy would help improve equality because women were more likely to experience homelessness than men, and that women were statistically likely to earn $262.50 per week less than men.

"It might come down to (Lord Mayor Clover) Moore's vote,” Cr Mendla told the Huffington Post.

“But the Council is predominantly female. The senior executives are female.

“So it will be interesting to see if it is accepted, or amended or if is rejected outright.”

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