Brecon and Radnorshire AM Kirsty Williams says Wales is committed to tackling period poverty, after the Welsh Government announced extra funding for sanitary products in schools.

The Period Dignity Grant for Schools will provide over 141,000 girls in Welsh primary and secondary schools with a range of sanitary products following a £2.3million Welsh Government initiative, it was announced last week.

Research from Plan International shows 15% of girls struggle to afford sanitary products, while 14% have had to borrow from friends and almost 20% have had to use a less suitable product because cost was an issue.

The Minister for Education, Kirsty Williams, said: “It’s unthinkable that young women could be forced to miss days of their education simply because they can’t access or afford period products.

“We’re committed to tackling this inequality in Wales and this funding will help make period products available to learners in all schools, free of charge and in the most dignified way possible.”

Schools will also be encouraged to support reusable, environmentally sustainable products to allow maximum choice for learners.

Supplying primary schools is a step further than provisions recently announced in England. The money will be made available immediately via Local Authorities, who fund schools in Wales.

The First Minister, Mark Drakeford, added: “We are committed to supporting period dignity and maintaining our investment in schools to help bring period poverty to an end.

“In March, we declared free sanitary products would be available to all women in Wales’ hospitals – it is only just that the same happens across our schools.

“It is essential ample sanitary products, as well as good facilities, are available to all female learners so they can manage their periods with confidence and remove what is an unnecessary barrier to their education.”

The funding comes on top of previous initiatives including an extra £440,000 for Local Authorities up until 2020 to provide sanitary products through schools, food banks and shelters to those who may otherwise struggle to afford them and £700,000 to improve school toilet facilities.