Ontario will soon require free menstrual products at construction sites
If passed, menstrual products will be required at all Ontario construction sites with 20 or more regularly employed workers and where the project is expected to last at least three months.

TCS Wire

May 6, 2024

The Ontario government will soon require construction business owners to provide their mostly male workforce with free menstrual products.

Ontario will soon require free menstrual products at construction sites

As per the Working For Workers Five Act, 2024, published earlier today, menstrual products will soon be required at all Ontario construction sites with 20 or more regularly employed workers and where the project is expected to last at least three months.

If passed, Ontario will be the first province in Canada to have this policy.

Additionally, business owners will soon be required to keep a record of maintaining sanitary washrooms and report to the government. According to the news release, this is a “direct response to advocacy from tradeswomen and other sector stakeholders who have cited better washroom facilities as a key policy to encourage more women to join the building trades.”

The government cites a survey on tradeswomen where over 50% say that construction might be more appealing to women if business owners were forced to report on the sanitation of their washrooms.

According to the BuildForce Canada 2021 Construction and Maintenance Looking Forward report, women make up just 5% of tradespeople working in construction, a figure that rises to 13% for the entire industry when administrative roles are included.

In other words, in a construction crew of twenty people, on average, there will be one female crewmember—if any at all. Despite this, even for all-male crews, pads, tampons, and other female hygiene products must now be provided at the employer’s expense.

“To deliver on this government’s ambitious plan to build Ontario, we’re going to need more hands on deck,” Ontario Labour Minister David Piccini said at a news conference. “But without more women in the trades, we’ll have one hand tied behind our backs, and I refuse to let this happen.”

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