Happy Saturday everyone,
A few years ago, my friend Kya was a Peace Corps volunteer, teaching at a girls’ school in Botswana. After a few months, she noticed a problem with absenteeism, directly related to a lack of menstrual supplies available to students. Without the necessary hygiene products, many girls were forced to miss several days of school each month.
We held a fundraiser to keep my friend’s supply closet stocked for the rest of the year with tampons and pads, as well as toiletries and bathroom cleaners, but a good action did not solve the biggest problem.
“periodic poverty” It might not be as extreme in New Jersey schools, but every day there’s a good chance a student will be caught without the supplies they need. Right now, the options are limited to a vending machine that may or may not work, or a trip to the school nurse’s office — if your school has a nurse on site.
While I hate to recommend legislative remedies for things like basic hygiene in schools, a bill currently before the state legislature would require all schools to provide free menstrual products in every bathroom.
Sounds like a no-brainer, right? Schools provide free toilet paper and hand towels, why not pads and tampons? But this is New Jersey, where ridicule can seep into any rational process. A hearing on the bill last week turned into an opportunity for some people to try to tie the measure to the state’s controversial sex education requirements.
A critic feared that the bill’s wording would require schools to put sanitary napkins and tampons in boys’ bathrooms, according to the New Jersey Monitor, which would lead to waste and concern that “Boys would put swabs in their noses to be funny and stop nosebleeds and use them to clog toilets and sinks.”
First, find me a teenager who will happily touch a feminine hygiene product and I’ll be surprised. Second, any school nurse will tell you that a heavy nosebleed is a perfectly acceptable use for a tampon. To me, that looks like a non-issue.
Yet one Republican lawmaker has described this simple, well-intentioned effort that could mean the difference between a successful day at school and one filled with discomfort and potential embarrassment as “part of a” full-fledged assault on families” and “people of faith” in the state.
The legislator must reject these attempts to argue over basic hygiene. I hope they pass this bill quickly. As one supporter of the measure wrote“Like toilet paper, soap and hand towels, period products are not a luxury; these are basic hygiene necessities. Providing menstrual products in schools gives all students an equal opportunity to learn and study without the monthly burden of getting something many people take for granted.
Also this week never speak ill of Jersey, raining money at the mall, a general store for sale, how to get a real ID and a celestial event:
THIS IS WHAT YOU HAVE: A danger! the contestant thought he would be a cute guy and made a joke of making fun of New Jersey, immediately bringing the Malocchio and bad luck on himself. He finished in third place.
CASH: So there’s a guy who likes to show up at the Freehold Raceway Mall during the holidays and throw fistfuls of cash from the second floor to the shoppers below. He did it again on Mother’s Day, and hopefully some lucky moms took home some of the loot.
SUCH A CASE: New Jersey’s oldest general store is up for sale and can be yours for the low price of $699,000! the Garriss General Store in Sussex County opened in 1876 and includes the two-storey commercial building and a 3-bedroom house next door.
REAL ID: I got a note from one of you this week saying you can’t make an appointment to get your real ID – and apparently you’re not the only one. Here’s everything you need to know to get it.
LOOKS FROM LUNA: If you’re up late on Sunday night, keep your eyes peeled for a full “flower moon” that will turn into a “blood moon” for a short time. Our Len Melisurgo has all the details on how to get a look here.
Finally, there is an alarming shortage of infant formula and parents are beginning to feel the effects. Some retailers began limiting purchase quantities months ago to help supply cope with the shortage created after recalls forced the closure of a major brand’s production plant. By the last week of April, 40% of top brands had released at major US retailers, and parents are sharing their stories on social media. Lawmakers are beginning to address the situation.
Is the shortage of infant formula affecting you or a parent you know? Email me and tell me.
Have a wonderful week, everyone!
PS: Patti LuPone had time to scold a spectator who refused to wear his mask correctly.