Costa Rica. La Chola, a symbolic sculpture by Costa Rican artist Manuel Vargas, representing the many women in the country, through the message of the “Cambimos La Regla” campaign to advocate for menstrual health and hygiene for all women in the country Woke up. Organization V Women Connecting.
It is an initiative that aims to re-promote the project of Law No. 22,421, which aims to promote and guarantee the actions of the Costa Rican State in health and menstrual hygiene, providing women in search of access to essential menstrual hygiene products want to provide access. For a woman’s quality of health.
According to Marisela Zamora, president of the Nosotras Women’s Connecting organization, the campaign wants the bill to be relegated to the legislative stream in this new period, which is why the movement includes several actions that will be implemented this month throughout January . Such as: billboards, spaces in the media, a signature, social networks, among others, to highlight the importance of the project, before the deputies start the session again.
“We started this movement with a display of La Cholla, because it represents the constant struggle of all those women in the country and, according to the sculptor Manuel Vargas, all those who have made it possible to study and raise their children.” Zamora highlighted.
We Women Connecting is an organization focused on creating solutions for gender equality, inclusion and social change through art, culture, creativity and communication based in Costa Rica and with over 120 thousand women from Costa Rica, Rica, Latin America and Kenya managed to reach. , Africa.
importance of the project
According to estimates, a woman’s fertile life can last up to 4 decades. i.e. on average, a woman has 13 cycles of about 5 days in a year, of which it is recommended to change towels every 4 hours during menstruation, so on average a woman will use 30 towels per period, per year 390. Changing 6 towels a day could represent approximately ₡540 colones per woman, i.e. 27% of the ₡2,000 colones earned by the country’s poorest households.
This shows that, over her lifetime, a woman may need 15,640 sanitary napkins with an average cost of ₡90, giving us a total of ₡1,400,000 over her entire fertile life.
“Due to the biological condition of women these cost figures are very high and become a luxury that many cannot afford, so they must resort to newspapers or rags during their periods, and in the case of some girls or adolescents I turn it off.” Attending educational centers during periods because of this situation,” Zamora said.
We must bear in mind that 20% of households in our country live on less than ₵2,000 a day and 60% live on less than ₵7,270, according to the household survey by the National Institute of Statistics and Census (INEC). . ) of 2021.
project, a light on the way
In the midst of all these circumstances that many women experience, there is an opportunity for them and that is Project Law No. 22,421.
“With this movement we are putting this issue in the national dialogue, to mobilize the representatives who have the approval of the law in their hands, with citizen and media participation, to take the first step in a menstrual cycle with dignity. and autonomous for all people”, emphasized Zamora.
The bill seeks – in the first place – to obtain a lower value-added tax rate, so that the products are included in the basic basket. Similarly, such as creation of educational processes in relevant institutions, information campaigns and awareness about hygiene and menstrual management; And finally, formulate public policies and actions for access to menstrual products for student and prison populations.
It is also intended that the National Institute for Women (INAMU), the Ministry of Health and the Costa Rican Social Security Fund (CCSS) develop information and awareness campaigns in menstrual education, a variety of menstrual hygiene products, focusing on the management of menstruation . The need for menstrual infrastructure, prevention of period poverty, sustainable menstrual products, and period pollution, as well as the effects of painful periods and prevention of menstruation-related bullying.
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