Arizona Prisons To Provide Free Tampons After Backlash

By Claire Caulfield
Associated Press
Published: Thursday, February 22, 2018 - 10:29am
Updated: Thursday, February 22, 2018 - 12:39pm
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Jimmy Jenkins/KJZZ
Rep. Athena Salman addresses an all-male committee with her bill that would provide free, unlimited feminine hygiene products to all women in Arizona prisons.

The Arizona Department of Corrections will now provide free tampons to each female inmate in state prison.

The announcement comes a week after the department said it would triple the number of free sanitary pads it automatically provides, from 12 to 36. The department previously only provided free tampons when medically needed.

The number of free sanitary pads was increased from 12 to 36 a month in response to national backlash. In January, state representative Athena Salman proposed a bill to provide unlimited free tampons, pads and other feminine hygiene products. House Bill 2222 failed to pass the House Rules Committee, but brought significant attention to the issue. Inmates could get more free pads if needed but could only possess 24 at a time.

There are about 4,000 female inmates in the Arizona prison system.

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