Periods Need to be Inclusive
Menstruation is experienced by over half of the Canadian population, yet the conversation around periods can still be seemingly uncomfortable or “inappropriate” depending on who you talk to. Thanks to social media and films like Pixar’s Turning Red (FINALLY!), menstruation and other health issues are being more readily discussed, however; we still have work to do. Many people still associate “periods” with something only women experience. This assumption is inaccurate and leads to further health inequities, a key issue that people with vaginas continue to experience today.
It’s important to be inclusive when discussing the topic of menstruation. Here’s why: people who menstruate may include women, trans men, gender non-binary and 2Spirit people. Being inclusive when discussing menstruation has been an important learning for us within the Here for Her community.
Back in 2017, we created our social enterprise with the intent to focus on promoting health education and focusing specifically on women’s health. Don’t get us wrong, this work has and continues to be very important, but health issues are experienced by people with vaginas every day who may not identify as women and/or use the pronouns she/her. It’s important to include ALL folks in this conversation, as the collective goal here is to raise awareness on issues around menstruation, fight for menstrual equity, health equity and ensure all folks are properly educated on their health, able to advocate for themselves and have access to healthcare and basic human necessities like menstrual products.
Another important fact to note is menstrual inequities disproportionately impact Black, Indigenous and people of colour, as well as trans and non-binary individuals and people with disabilities. As a result, we are planning a rebrand, moving away from using the pronoun “her” in our name and continuing to focus on promoting health education and advocating for gender and health equity for all folks in Canada!
Follow Rachel and her amazing Advocacy work @shophereforher