In a landmark move designed to champion the rights of female athletes, the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs have announced a groundbreaking initiative in partnership with hygiene leaders, Initial Hygiene (part of Rentokil Initial Australia).
The Bulldogs, making a bold stride as the first NRL club to do so, are setting up free menstruation product dispensers in all female bathrooms and locker rooms. This initiative comes as part of the NRL’s Women in League Round and dovetails perfectly with the Club's preparation to host the first-ever NRLW double-header at the iconic Belmore Sports Ground on July 30.
With the support of Initial Hygiene, a forerunner in promoting the washroom dignity movement within corporate Australia, Washroom Dignity dispensers and sanitary bins will be installed at Belmore Sports Ground. This means all public washrooms and female locker rooms will provide freely accessible menstruation products for everyone in need.
The Bulldogs and Initial Hygiene share the common goal to ensure that menstruation doesn't prevent women and girls from participating in sports or performing at their best. The provision of free and discreet access to period products within washrooms is central to this initiative. While some sporting organisations in Europe have already initiated similar programs, the Bulldogs take pride in being the trailblazers of this dignity-based approach in the Australian sports ecosystem.
Aaron Warburton, Bulldogs CEO, expressed the club's commitment to inclusivity, "We want as many girls and women to feel that rugby league is a game for everyone to enjoy. The women's game's growth and progression are priorities for the Bulldogs."
Rentokil Initial's recent research with Researchify revealed that the lack of adequate access to menstruation and incontinence products at work causes stress and anxiety for 61% of working women in Australia. More than half (55%) reported that they had taken time out of their workday to buy sanitary products, an option not available to elite athletes and many other professionals.
Karen Kavanagh, Marketing Director Pacific at Rentokil Initial, lauded the Bulldogs' move, saying, "Having your period shouldn't be a barrier to your ability to perform at work, whether that’s in an office or a sports field.” The initiative is not just for players, but also for Bulldogs employees, fans, and visitors, allowing everyone to have access to free period products within the grounds. This effort aligns with Initial Hygiene's ongoing campaign to advocate for washroom dignity within corporate Australia, pushing for a change in the perception and provision of free and easy access to period products.
This partnership marks a milestone in the advancement of female athletes' rights, setting a precedent for other clubs, sporting codes, and businesses across the country.
Find out more about washroom dignity and our hygiene services at https://www.initial.com/au/hygiene-services/washroom-dignity
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