By: Sami Sharfin
November 13-19 is Transgender Awareness Week! This one-week event is focused on raising the visibility of transgender people and addressing the issues that members of the community face. Trans Awareness Week leads up to the Transgender Day of Remembrance on November 20, which honors and remembers victims of transphobia.
So, what is period inclusivity?
Forbes defines period inclusivity as the recognition that while periods are a biological process, gender isn't fixed and assigned at birth.
The reality is, not all people with periods are women and not all women have periods. Research from an HRC Foundation and University of Connecticut survey found that approximately 75% of trans youth responded as identifying with terms other than “boy” or “girl.”
Many period products on the market are heavily gendered which alienates transgender and non-binary people. Our mission at Aunt Flow is to ensure that EVERYONE has access to high-quality menstrual products, which is why we refer to all pads and tampons as ‘menstrual products,’ rather than ‘feminine hygiene products,’ in hopes of creating more inclusive and kinder spaces.
As we are actively changing our language to promote period inclusivity, we continue to advocate for safety in restrooms for transgender and gender non-conforming people. All menstruators deserve safe access to period products when using them, and we’ve learned that privacy and concealment help to create safety. As a result, we ensure that all-gender, single-stall restrooms are stocked with products like thin, concealable pads to establish a safe space for people with periods.
While we celebrate Trans Awareness Week, we hope our guide on period inclusivity helps inspire other ideas in restrooms for businesses and schools all around the world!
Want to learn more about Aunt Flow’s transgender and gender non-conforming advocacy? Check out these articles from Reviewed, Well+Good and Bustle!
Sami Sharfin is a freelance writer, content creator and current senior at Indiana University-Bloomington.