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The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

MUSG strives to provide greater access to period products

The Marquette University Student Government is attempting to pass a bill that would allow for free period products in popular campus locations
The bill comes as a result of the pillars of MUSG leadership campaign promises. Marquette Wire Stock photo.

Marquette University Student Government President Abbie Moravec and Executive Vice President Tommy Treacy are looking to support students’ health and wellness as much as possible before their term ends in May. 

When Moravec and Treacy were elected in March of last year, their campaign was based on three pillars: social justice, sustainability and health and wellness. Before the semester ends, they are hoping to pass a bill under their health and wellness pillar that could help make period products more accessible to Marquette students. 

“We were thinking about ways that we could uplift as many students as possible, and one great way to support all female students on campus is by providing period products,” Treacy said. 

The bill is currently in a one-year pilot program with free and accessible period products in the Alumni Memorial Union, Straz Gym and Raynor Library. If the bill passes, Moravec said money will be allocated from the MUSG reserve fund to allow for the removal of outdated period product dispensers and the purchasing of new products.

“Depending on how students see that as helping or not, we’re going to try to extend to other buildings in the university, like bigger academic buildings,” Moravec said.

Moravec said MUSG has $12,000 ready to go toward funding the bill after her and Treacy’s term expires. 

“From the COVID years, the budgets largely went unspent because there was nobody here on campus to take advantage of them. So, we have quite a bit of money backlogged in our reserve fund,” Treacy said. 

Moravec said the bill will be presented to the student senate sometime next week, where she expects it to move on to the university administration and hopefully pass before her graduation. 

Moravec said she had spoken to the Marquette Board of Trustees as well as the Committee on Student Life and Mission about the bill in December, and they were in favor of her and Treacy’s idea.  

“There’s lots of popular support from students and senators, so we’re very excited to actually get [the bill] in front of people and get that approved,” Treacy said. 

Under her and Treacy’s campaign pillar of health and wellness, Moravec said this period product bill is one of the most prioritized large action items.

“One big thing I’ve seen throughout my years in student government is that the pillar of health and wellness hasn’t been touched on as much as I had hoped,” Moravec said. 

Both Moravec and Treacy also said period poverty is a major concern of theirs, as they said some students feel forced to products at the Walgreen’s on campus that are more expensive than those at similar stores. Moravec said their bill seeks to help take the financial burden of having a period off these students.

“Following through on the promises of Marquette, we’re not just here to provide a quality education. We’re also here to care for the whole person, like the phrase Cura Personalis says,” Treacy said. 

Moravec said she took inspiration from other Jesuit universities across the country with accessible period products, such as Xavier University and Georgetown University, to formulate the MUSG bill. While some schools have provided greater accessibility to these products, she said she feels the subject is still taboo at many universities including Marquette. 

“At college campuses everywhere, I feel like [period care] is not being prioritized at all,” Moravec said. “Administration is a lot of men from what I’ve seen, and they understand what it is, but they don’t have to go through it, so they don’t understand how expensive it is or how accessible the products are.”

Moravec began the period product bill as a passion project of her own but said it has become something greater as it has developed. She said MUSG has received support from the Marquette maintenance department, the student senate, and some members of university administration in developing and fine-tuning their project. Treacy said formulating this legislation is a landmark project that involves and uplifts everyone.

“That’s the beauty of being able to support people in this way. It’s shameless, it’s not stigmatized. It’s simply there for people who need it,” Treacy said.

Now Moravec and Treacy will just have to await the passing of their bill through the student senate and university administration. Moravec said she is excited about how the bill could be implemented in the next year and help relieve the financial stress of future generations of students if it passes. She and Tracy said they believe the pilot bill could lead to bigger university-funded legislation and overall greater accessibility to period products in many locations around campus.

“It’s an easy way to extend a hand without [students] having to ask. Obviously, period products aren’t going to solve all of their issues, but you know what? It’s a start,” Treacy said.

This story was written by Mia Thurow. She can be reached at [email protected].

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About the Contributor
Mia Thurow
Mia Thurow is a first-year student from Oconomowoc, Wisconsin double-majoring in Journalism and Spanish with a minor in Digital Media. She is a Marquette Wire News Reporter for the 2023-2024 school year. In her free time, Mia enjoys cheering on all her favorite sports teams, exploring downtown Milwaukee with friends, and spending time hiking in nature. Mia is excited to meet new people during her time at the Wire and raise awareness of important news stories in the local community.

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