One of the new laws that will take effect in 2024 has to do with bathrooms inside Minnesota's public schools. Starting January 1st Minnesota schools will be required to supply feminine products free of charge in all public school restrooms.

The new law was signed this past Legislative session and goes into effect on January 1st.

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A school district or charter school must provide students with access to menstrual products at no charge. The products must be available to all menstruating students in restrooms regularly used by students in grades 4 to 12 according to a plan developed by the school district. For purposes of this section, "menstrual products" means pads, tampons, or other similar products used in connection with the menstrual cycle. - Section 121A.212

According to a article "A Republican-backed amendment to add the word "female" to the bill failed in committee. 'Not all students who menstruate are female,' Representative Sandra Feist (New Brighton) said, persuading committee members to vote "no" on the amendment."

The failed measure by Republicans to add the word 'female' to the bill means that both the women's and men's bathrooms will be stocked with the products.

There are 28 states in the US that require free period products in schools, Minnesota is the latest state to be added to that list. Other states on that list include:

  • Texas
  • Arkansas
  • Colorado
  • California
  • Michigan
  • Iowa

In a news release in January 2023, Rep. Feist said:

“The impact of period poverty on students’ ability to really get a full education in Minnesota” is beyond dispute, she said. Data shows that 10% of menstruating youth miss school days because of a lack of access to menstrual products."

The bill would institute a statewide mandate — all school bathrooms serving students in grades 4-12 must be furnished with menstrual products. The state would foot the bill for providing these supplies.

You can read the full release here. 

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