London Heathrow Airport’s gender equality network has partnered with period product social enterprise Hey Girls and airport service company Mitie to give staff access to free period products via more than 100 dispensers.
The dispensers have been placed in the airport’s staff female and accessible toilets. The partnership comes following a four-month pilot at the airport that saw 24 dispensers placed in staff bathrooms. It will also see period products donated to local community partners such as homeless shelters and women’s refuges, through Hey Girls’ ‘buy one, donate one’ model. More than 1,000 products were donated to centers as part of the four-month trial, including Feltham Foodbank in nearby Hounslow Road in the UK. All disposable Hey Girls products are made with sustainably sourced bamboo and are plastic free. They are also free of bleach, toxins and perfume.
Louise Brown, head of the gender equality network at Heathrow Airport, said, “Our partnership with Hey Girls and Mitie means that our colleagues will have access to free sanitary products. This important initiative will not only improve the well-being of colleagues in the airport, it also helps us support the end of period poverty by donating products to our local community.”
Daisy Williams, partnerships and contracts manager at Hey Girls, said, “This fantastic partnership will have an incredible impact on the lives of airport staff and nearby residents. The cost of living crisis is seeing more and more people in the UK struggle to afford period products and turn to often dangerous alternatives. Partnerships like this not only help support employees through these tough economic times but also have a direct benefit to vulnerable people in the area. Period products are not a luxury, and we are so pleased that Heathrow Airport has joined us in our fight to end period poverty once and for all.”
Lorraine Calvert, joint secretary at Feltham Foodbank, said, “We are incredibly grateful to Hey Girls and Heathrow Airport for donating products to the food bank. The demand for our services has increased considerably and partnerships such as this are a huge help in ensuring we can support those in need. Not having to spend the money donated to us on sanitary products is a great help and comes with the added bonus that we can choose from a wide range of products to meet people’s needs.”