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Menstrual Equity Fund Pilot

Menstrual equity refers to equal and comprehensive access to menstrual products, as well as access to education regarding sexual and reproductive health and rights. Period poverty is a lack of access to menstrual products, education, hygiene facilities, waste management, or a combination of these.

Many people face barriers to accessing menstrual products or educational materials because of financial limitations and/or harmful social norms and attitudes surrounding menstruation.

Lack of access to menstrual products is closely linked to poverty and disproportionately impacts youth, single mothers, Indigenous peoples, Black and other racialized communities, immigrants, people experiencing homelessness, people living with disabilities, gender diverse individuals, and those who live in remote areas.

A 2022 Plan International Canada study found that: 

Addressing barriers related to affordability and stigma

Budget 2022 committed to establishing a national pilot for the Menstrual Equity Fund (MEF) to address the barriers related to affordability and stigma that some Canadians face when accessing menstrual products.

Phase 1: Engagement

Throughout 2022–23, Women and Gender Equality Canada (WAGE) undertook research and engagement activities to better understand the menstrual equity landscape in Canada. This included:

Phase 2: The pilot – A national approach

Information gathered through engagement activities informed the design of the MEF pilot, which centres on selecting one established national non-profit organization to:

Phase 3: Targeted call for proposals

WAGE will launch a targeted call for proposals to solicit applications from five national not-for-profit organizations. One national not-for-profit organization will be selected to lead the MEF pilot.

National candidates that have been invited to apply must demonstrate qualities that will support a successful MEF pilot, including:

If you have not been contacted to apply but believe that your organization meets all the criteria, please contact us by June 5, 2023 at FEGC.Rsap-Cfpe.WAGE@fegc-wage.gc.ca.

The MEF pilot builds on ongoing work at the federal level to advance menstrual equity, including:

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