Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has revealed that tackling period poverty is a "personal priority" for her, as the Government promises to address the issue before next year's budget.
This comes as a petition calling on the Government to provide sanitary products for all students, which gathered more than 3000 signatures, was presented to Woman's Minister Julie Anne Genter this morning.
Speaking at an event, Genter said the issue of period poverty was a priority for the Government and the Prime Minister.
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"I'm very confident that we will have an announcement before the budget about progress on this."
Speaking to media this afternoon, Ardern said the issue of period poverty was "something I'm personally looking into and working on some ideas and solutions".
She said there are some mechanisms in place at the moment to address the issue of period poverty – whereby a woman is unable to access sanitary products because of financial constraints.
"But questions [are] being asked about whether it's got the reach that we need."
But Ardern did not want to go into any further details about the would-be policy.
She added that the Government was looking into it "actively" and was looking to make decisions before the Budget.
Information from data gathering organisation Youth 19 NZ showed that of 7700 young women surveyed, 13 per cent said they found it difficult to get sanitary items because of the cost.
That number was closer to 20 per cent when it came to Māori and Pacific peoples.
The data also showed that close to one in 10 young women miss school because of their periods.
Although not revealing much detail about the period poverty policy, Genter hinted the Government would be implementing a similar scheme to the one in Scotland, where the Government offered free sanitary products to girls in schools.
"Women and girls need to have access to a range of products that will meet their particular needs," Genter said.
She said when possible, those options should be more environmentally friendly solutions.
The petition was presented to MPs by Jacinta Gulasekharam, co-founder of Dignity – an organisation that provides access to sanitary items for all women in New Zealand.
She welcomed the Government's moves but said she was waiting to hear more details of the Government's plan before she got too excited.
"It seems like we're still going to be in the dark going into Christmas and there is still a bit of a cone of silence around what's actually going to happen on this issue."
She wants to see a commitment from the Government to have sanitary products in all schools across the country, and those products to include a range of items.