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10-year-old leads PEC Period Party to Queen’s Park

Prince Edward County Period Party team members Nell Casson, Ramona Roblin, Alison Kelly, (and Kelly Roblin) made the trip to Queen’s Park to speak with Marit Stiles, Official Leader of the Opposition about period poverty.

Prince Edward County grassroots advocacy toward the elimination of period poverty expanded to Queen’s Park Wednesday, May 31.

Prince Edward County Period Party team members Ramona Roblin, Alison Kelly, Kelly Roblin and Nell Casson, made the trip to further the conversation about period poverty.

After being introduced in the legislature as “guests of the house” by the Official Leader of the Opposition Marit Stiles, Ramona and the team met with Stiles to talk about the PEC Period Party project, successes to date, and how more needs to be done.

Ramona, 10, of Picton, spoke to Stiles about the need for gender-inclusive curriculum in schools, in addition to more support for educators who may be uncomfortable speaking about periods.

She spoke out about how schools need more than the three-pads-per-student-per year offered by the Ontario government, that not only are better quality products required, but also the need for more products and the inclusion of tampons.

“Menstruating students want tampons, not those low-quality pads that were clearly made by men,” she added.

Ramona also used the opportunity to advocate for the environment, 2SLGBTQIA+ inclusivity, and hopes to be partnering with Stiles on further advocacy toward the elimination of period poverty.

After the meeting, Ramona and the team met with Sabrina Nanji, a journalist with Queen’s Park Observer. When asked by Sabrina what she thought about watching Question and Answer, Ramona told her, “There seems to be a lot of white men and older people in politics who keep talking about how their ideas are the best. What I didn’t hear is how they can do better.”

The PEC Period Party was established in 2018 as a grassroots community project to raise awareness of period poverty in PEC and raise funds for essential hygiene products as well as creating a safe space for menstruating people to normalize talking about menstrual health.

The project has raised more than $10,000 in products and cash which supported schools in both Hastings Prince Edward District School Board and Algonquin Lakeshore Catholic District School Board. Donations also went to the fitness and aquatic centre, Prince Edward Learning Centre, Picton Library, ROC Youth Centre, The Mohawks of Bay of Quinte and the Ukraine Donation Drop-off. Four coin-free machines and additional products were also donated to PECI (two), Athol-South Marysburgh School and CML Snider School in Wellington.

This spring, the County took a step toward ending period poverty in the community with the installation of dispensers for free menstrual products at the Picton and Wellington community centres as part of a pilot project.


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