Tayside period dignity officer axed due to 'threats and abuse' towards man appointed
The role of period dignity lead officer has been scrapped as a result of abuse towards the man appointed, a group has said.
A wave of backlash arose after Jason Grant, who previously worked in tobacco sales, was announced as the period dignity regional lead officer for the Tay region last month.
When Mr Grant’s position was announced, tennis star Martina Navratilova described it as "f*****g ridiculous" that a man was taking on the role.
Despite defending his appointment at the time by stating he was the "strongest candidate”, a working group who made the selection has announced the role will no longer exist.
The Period Dignity Working Group said the position was axed due to the abuse and threats levelled at the candidate and they were exploring different ways to provide period products.
New legislation last month came into force in Scotland protecting the right to free sanitary products.
The Period Products Act means councils and education providers have to make the free items available.
A spokesperson for the Period Dignity Working Group said: “The partners involved in the Period Dignity Working Group are committed to alleviating period poverty in Angus, Dundee, and Perth and Kinross. It is regrettable that given the threats and abuse levelled at individuals in recent weeks, the period dignity regional lead officer role will not continue.
"The working group is now looking closely at alternative ways to deliver these vital services in line with the legal requirements of the Period Products (Free Provision) (Scotland) Act 2021.
"Meanwhile, support will continue to be provided to the colleagues and students who have been subjected to personal attack. Their safety and well-being is of paramount importance. The group’s joint work to provide free period products is rooted in kindness. We therefore ask that the same spirit of kindness is extended to those involved, and that their privacy is respected.”
Previous reports stated Mr Grant was appointed in the “first role of its kind in Scotland”. However, various councils such as Glasgow have appointed period dignity officers.
The Scottish Government said it was not involved in the hiring processes and did not ring-fence specific money for the positions.
However, a spokesperson said it is “unacceptable that anyone should be subject to threats or abuse on social media, as happened in this case.”
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