ReleasesOctober 8, 2021
Shoppers Drug Mart makes period products more accessible in Ontario schools
Working with the Ontario’s Ministry of Education, Shoppers Drug Mart in partnership with Always & U by Kotex® Canada will provide 18 million period products to public schools
October 8, 2021; Toronto, ON. Today, Shoppers Drug Mart announced a new partnership with the Ontario government to make period products more accessible to high school students across Ontario. Over the next three years, Shoppers will donate 18 million period products and 1,200 product dispensers to Ontario’s public schools.
“Period products shouldn’t be considered a luxury item for anyone. However, recent studies show that up to one-third of Canadian women have had to choose between buying a period product and an essential item on their grocery list,” said Jeff Leger, President, Shoppers Drug Mart. “This donation will provide thousands of students in Ontario with free access to period products, thousands who won’t have to make that difficult choice. We are proud to be a part of this initiative, and grateful to our stores, our partners, and our customers for their support.”
Shoppers Drug Mart will work with leading manufacturers, Procter & Gamble and Kimberly-Clark, to supply 6 million period products to school boards each year for the next three years.
“For more than 35 years, Always has been committed to creating positive social norms around menstruation and helping young people have access to the period products they need. That why since 2018, the Always End Period Poverty Program has donated over 3 million period products to students in Canadian schools. With over 200 million pads donated to young people around the world in the past 10 years, Always is truly making a difference,” said Liz Dubejsky, Brand Director Always Canada. “Together, we can help #EndPeriodPoverty and create a country where no student has to miss school because of lack of access to period protection.”
“U by Kotex® Canada believes no woman should have to miss school or work because of a period, and we’re proud to work with Shoppers Drug Mart to help fight period poverty in schools throughout Ontario,” said Brian Clayton, Senior Director of Marketing for U by Kotex® Canada. “We look forward to shedding light on the consequences the lack of access to period products can have on the lives of individuals, and inspire others to take action to help fight period poverty in their communities.”
The partnership with the Ontario government is part of a long-term commitment by Shoppers Drug Mart Inc. through its LOVE YOU by Shoppers Drug Mart initiative to raise awareness and create action against period poverty in Canada.
“Through the strong advocacy of young leaders in our schools, it has become extremely clear that menstrual products are a necessity, not a luxury,” said Stephen Lecce, Minister of Education. “This agreement will help remove barriers for women and girls by allowing them to access products at school, free of charge. It is another important way that we are helping to build more inclusive schools that empowers all girls to have the confidence to succeed.”
“Our government is committed to reducing stigma and removing barriers that prevent women and girls from achieving their full potential,” said Jane McKenna, Associate Minister of Children and Women’s Issues. “Ensuring that menstrual products are free and readily available to students who need them will help create more equitable environments in our schools.”
Since 2011, the LOVE YOU by Shoppers Drug Mart program has supported women’s health, including initiatives focused on helping women facing period poverty such as: product donations, local campaigns like Tampon Tuesday, making period product dispensers available to homeless women in Toronto, and strategic collaborations with partners like Food Banks Canada. To learn more about Shopper’s initiatives, visit http://shoppersdrugmart.ca/periodpoverty.
About Shoppers Drug Mart Inc.
Shoppers Drug Mart Inc. is one of the most recognized and trusted names in Canadian retailing. The company is the licensor of full-service retail drug stores operating under the name Shoppers Drug Mart (Pharmaprix in Québec). With almost 1,300 Shoppers Drug Mart and Pharmaprix stores operating in prime locations in each province and two territories, the company is one of the most convenient retailers in Canada. The company also licenses or owns 47 medical clinic pharmacies operating under the name Shoppers Simply Pharmacy (Pharmaprix Simplement Santé in Québec), and provides cosmetic dermatology services at two standalone locations, the Beauty Clinic. As well, the company owns and operates 43 corporate Wellwise by Shoppers Drug Mart stores and an ecommerce site Wellwise.ca, making it the largest Canadian retailer of home health care products and services. In addition to its retail store network, the company owns Medical Cannabis by Shoppers Drug Mart Inc., an online platform for the sale of medical cannabis, Shoppers Drug Mart Specialty Health Network Inc., a provider of specialty drug distribution, pharmacy and comprehensive patient support services, and MediSystem Inc., a provider of pharmaceutical products and services to long-term care facilities. Shoppers Drug Mart is an independent operating division of Loblaw Companies Limited.