On Tuesday, Feb. 26, the Student Government Association (SGA) unanimously approved of a bill that appropriates $2,500 to provide free menstrual products to students.
The bill, Bill 19:05 [S] – Menstrual Product Trial Run, was introduced by Townhouse Sen. Alec Bernstein (‘19) at Feb. 19’s SGA meeting. “I hope the trial run is successful, and I’m excited to see the results,” Bernstein said.
The menstrual products, a combination of tampons and pads, will be available in the food pantry, located in the Campus Center.
Additionally, a bill to appropriate $7,000 to purchase a vending machine that will sell emergency contraceptives was introduced, and will be voted on Tuesday, March 5. If approved, the machine will also be placed in the food pantry. Details such as OneCard payment and the cost/brand of the emergency contraceptive are still to be determined.
“If St. Mary’s wants to state that it is at the forefront of… advancing student needs and caring about the student body, then this would be a good place to start,” Bernstein stated. Columbia University, Stanford University, and Dartmouth College have all installed emergency contraceptive vending machines.
In the past few weeks, the SGA has also passed bills that allow for the Wellness Center to hold two flu vaccination events next fall semester, and will fully fund flu shots for the first fifty students. The bill’s sponsor, Sen. Collette Nortman, mentioned that the Wellness Center hosted a flu vaccination drive last semester, but noted that “it wasn’t really well advertised” and that “the attendance was really low.”