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JDPC bemoans problems of women under menstruation during COVID-19

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JUSTICE Development and Peace Caritas (JDPC), has expressed worry over the challenges  facing women under menstruation, which have been aggravated by the novel COVID-19 pandemic.

  Addressing a news conference as part of activities to mark 2020 World Menstrual Hygiene Day, at the Basilica of the Most Holy Trinity, Onitsha, the Executive Director of JDPC, Onitsha Archdiocese, Rev. Fr. Edwin Udoye, expressed worry that good menstrual hygiene management is being threatened by the ravaging coronavirus pandemic.

  According to him,  the coronavirus pandemic has far-reaching consequence for many people, including women under mensuration, adding that the lockdown, closed boarders and shuttered businesses, have affected their access to menstrual hygiene management materials and supplies.

  “Menstrual materials and supplies are essential items and economic disruption as we are witnessing during this coronavirus pandemic; lockdown has led to women and girls losing access to hygiene products, which include, sanitary pads and tampons, menstrual cups, reusable napkins, pain medication and soaps.

  “There is also problem of people in quarantine not having access to menstrual hygiene products, just as the 70 per cent health workers who are women, working long hours under intense pressure, not having the menstrual hygiene products to effectively respond to the challenges posed by the patients who are suffering from the pandemic virus.

  “Coronavirus pandemic is taking a lot of tolls on women and girls, particularly, front-line health workers who wear personal protective equipment, PPE, since putting on and removing them prevents the quick changing of menstrual hygiene materials, which are not supposed to be carried for more than four hours, being carried beyond the time, leading to women bleeding into the protective suits”.

  Also speaking, financial secretary of the association, Mrs Roberts,  appealed to the federal and state governments to ensure that menstrual health and hygiene items and supplies are declared essentials and remain available for easy access by women and girls in a time like this period of COVID-19.

  Contributing, the Executive Director of JDPC, Onitsha Archdiocese, Rev. Fr. Udoye, said that they would have taken the 2020 World Menstrual Hygiene Day to the school as enlightenment campaign but could not do so because schools were shut down because of the pandemic virus.

  “Every year on May 28, non-governmental organisations, government agencies, the private sector, the media, and individuals come together to celebrate Menstrual Hygiene Day, to highlight the importance of good menstrual hygiene management.

  “As part of activities marking the day, JDPC, Onitsha Archdiocese lined up some activities to mark the day and this press conference is one of the activities for this year’s celebration with the theme, ‘Period in Pandemic’.

  “The idea behind the choice of the theme for this year’s celebration is to highlight how the challenges faced by women during their menstrual period have been aggravated by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.”

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