The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

New L-RAJE program provides menstrual products in fraternity bathrooms

In addition to providing menstrual products, L-RAJE will provide lectures on menstruation to the fraternities (Photo courtesy of Emily Mackin ’24).

A new program provides menstrual products in the frequented restrooms of all on-campus fraternity houses.

Lafayette for Reproductive Autonomy, Justice, and Empowerment (L-RAJE) collaborated with Fraternity and Sorority Life (FSL) to distribute the menstrual products.

This initiative falls in line with L-RAJE’s mission of opening a dialogue about menstrual equity in all corners of campus.

“Being very cis-male dominant spaces on campus that are exclusive, like Greek life, but are still frequented social spaces, they have this responsibility to be part of this conversation,” L-RAJE president Emily Mackin ‘24 said. 

The idea was first introduced last semester by L-RAJE vice president of advocacy Piper Chimento ‘26 after hearing of fraternities at other schools that participate in workshops about how to create safe spaces for women.

From there, the group sent out a form in early February to all sororities on campus asking if there was a need for period supplies in fraternities. The form was also encouraged to be sent outside of Greek Life. With over 100 responses and an overall positive response, Mackin reached out to all fraternity presidents with the suggestion. 

“Even though the majority of people in fraternities are people who don’t menstruate, it’s still a conversation that they should be open to approaching,” Mackin said. 

Elijah Halsey ‘24, the president of the Delta Upsilon fraternity, said that he “immediately jumped on” the initiative. After only two weeks, there was a box placed with tampons and pads in the fraternity’s basement bathroom, along with a poster describing the initiative’s purpose. 

“I think we have to recognize that we have a role on this campus and that involves a lot of things for a group of all men,” Halsey said. “I think we need to be aware of other groups and other needs that people have.”

Matt Kirkman ’24, president of the Chi Phi fraternity, believes that this initiative plays a big role in making the fraternity’s guests feel more comfortable at the house.

“By having these products set up in the main bathroom, it sends a message that we’re accepting and understanding of issues that women have to deal with that men don’t get to see all that often,” Kirkman said.

The products are free for anyone to take as needed through an allocation of club funding which puts L-RAJE’s goal of product accessibility into practice. 

“The amount of tampons one woman goes through is very substantial in your lifetime … even just in the four years you’re at school,” Chimento said. “It’s really a large investment, which is funny to think that something that’s health-related or completely unavoidable is an investment.”

Bins will be regularly restocked by L-RAJE through open communication with fraternity members on their status.

The program also includes a series of menstrual equity workshops administered to fraternities at chapter meetings to be held in the coming weeks. Through these workshops, L-RAJE hopes to break the stigma of menstruating.

“It’s not something you should be scared to talk about when it’s very natural,” Chimento said. 

Moving forward, the group is focusing on scaling up the initiative with their workshops, aiming to eventually receive involvement from all the Greek organizations on campus.

“Putting products in the house is sort of just the basis of really diving deep into why it’s necessary and why it’s important to somebody who it doesn’t necessarily apply directly to,” Chimento said. 

Outside of this program, L-RAJE has hosted open discussions for students on campus, including members of the Panhellenic community. Two weeks ago, they held a spiral council workshop with sorority Pi Beta Phi on the intersections between sexual education and mental health. 

“Being able to work with Greek Life this semester has been great because it’s building up a long-standing connection that we can have,” Mackin said.

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Bernadette Russo
Bernadette Russo, Culture Editor
Likes trees and hates writing bios.

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