Translate page with Google

Project October 6, 2021

Demystifying Menstruation in Puerto Rico

paintings at menstrual exhibition
Paintings displayed at 'Cíclica,' a menstrual exhibition in Hato Rey, Puerto Rico that took place Sept. 2021. Image by Adriana Rozas Rivera. United States, 2021.

This investigation explores the lack of data on injustices menstruating individuals face on the island of Puerto Rico. Through print and multimedia reporting, Adriana Rozas Rivera covers access to menstrual products, education, and health care. The reporting also focuses on the group of activists that are smashing all taboos and talking about the issues with zero qualms.

With 43.5 percent of the island living in poverty, some menstruating individuals cannot afford to purchase sufficient products. They resort to using makeshift products to manage their bleeding. This is known as “period poverty” and while typically associated with developing countries, it’s affecting U.S. citizens on the island. But injustices go beyond "period poverty." Activists report that bathrooms at schools sometimes lack running water, toilet paper, and stall doors, making it harder for people to manage their menstruation.

In response to these issues, activists are making noise through art, workshops, and social media. The end goal? To change the narrative around menstruation to one that redefines this process, centering gender identity, age, race, and socioeconomic background.