Backlash Over Male ‘Period Dignity Officer’ Justified, Campaigner Says
- A Scottish group partly run by parliament has appointed a man as the country’s first menstrual dignity officer.
- The decision not to hire women has sparked controversy and criticism online.
- One campaigner told Insider that the issue of appointing a man to the position was one of representation.
Immediate sparks sparked when a man was recently named the country’s first ‘menstrual dignity officer’ by a Scottish group strong rebound.
Critics including former tennis player Martina Navratilova describe Jason Grant’s appointment as ‘ridiculous’ and ‘ridiculous’ Twitter. Meanwhile, Scottish politician Ian Blackford told sky news A woman would be a better choice to fill the role.
Grant, a former account manager and personal trainer at Imperial Tobacco, was named a successful candidate by the Menstrual Dignity Task Force just days after legislation would allow Scots access to free period products. The group includes representatives from local councils and universities in Dundee and Angus.
As regional head, Grant will raise awareness and engage young people in projects related to new legislation, the Period Products Act, which involves bringing free period products into schools, colleges and universities. His role was funded by the Scottish Government.
A spokesperson for the Period Dignity working group told Insider that Grant was the strongest candidate. “We look forward to supporting this important work across the region by changing culture, encouraging debate and de-stigmatizing menstruation,” they added.
The spokesman added that Grant did not want to comment on his new role.
Charlotte O’Byrne, fundraising manager at Freedom4Girls, a UK-era poverty charity, said the hiring decision was a failure despite any goodwill from the organisation.
“I know that certain aspects of this work are essentially gender-neutral,” O’Byrne said. “But women have been doing this work for free for years, and that alone makes it inevitable that some women are better suited and more qualified for the role.”
O’Byrne added that Scotland bringing its menstrual products laws into law was “huge” for the wider movement to make menstrual dignity a fundamental human right and that “many feel women deserve the job”.
There are many common myths about menstruation. A campaign to end menstrual taboos and implement menstrual-free products is underway in many countries around the world.
In the United States, some states, including New York, have passed legislation requiring K-12 schools to offer free term products to students.one left federal bill in committee Proposed by New York Democrat Grace Meng, if passed, would require Medicaid to pay for menstrual products.
O’Byrne said the problem of having a single person lead these kinds of projects is primarily a matter of representation.
Regarding the criticism, she said: “It’s more of a disappointment for a lot of people because it’s the first ever role of its kind with such a high level and it’s been awarded to a male. We hope it’s mostly a female voice here.”
“Yes, we want and need allies between women and men,” she added, “but in this, we kind of want to acknowledge that women, girls and menstruating are the ones who live with inequality and People who are accustomed to justice. Shut up and endure.”