Dáil debates

Wednesday, 13 March 2019

5:10 pm

Photo of Jim DalyJim Daly (Cork South West, Fine Gael)

I thank all the Deputies for their contributions on this issue and assure them that their input will be given due consideration when we look at ways to mitigate period poverty. The impact that period poverty can have on the ability and confidence of women and girls to participate to their full potential in education, employment, sport or social activities is something we need to address. The impact on mental well-being from feelings of shame or stigma associated with period poverty is also something we need to collectively address.

Government policy aims to treat all citizens as equal regardless of gender. We have published the national strategy for women and girls and a cross-governmental strategy committee, led by the Department of Justice and Equality and chaired by my colleague, the Minister of State, Deputy Stanton, is in place to oversee implementation.

It is clear from the issues raised this evening that tackling this issue of period poverty is likely to require a multidisciplinary response from across the Government. All the main Departments, the other partner organisations and sectors are already collaborating on the implementation of the women and girls strategy. This will be an obvious and useful forum in which to consider the matters raised this evening.

I thank the Oireachtas Women's Parliamentary Caucus for raising the profile of this important issue and for the good work undertaken to date. I reassure Members that I and my fellow Ministers at the Department of Health and the Department look forward to contributing to the development of measures intended to address it.

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