Otten to host Period Products Drive

EXTON, June 11 – State Rep. Danielle Friel Otten, D-Chester, will host a Period Products Drive through Friday, June 28, at her legislative district office, 631 N. Pottstown Pike in Exton. The drive will support local organizations in need of donations to ensure that members of the community have access to the essential menstrual hygiene supplies they need.

Donations of new, unopened packages of pads and tampons can be dropped off at Otten’s district office between 9 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday throughout the month of June. 

Additionally, Otten hopes to raise awareness around period poverty as the General Assembly considers legislation to address this issue. Period poverty, or the inability to afford and access necessary menstrual products, is real, and it’s affecting people throughout Pennsylvania, including here in Chester County. Across our commonwealth, one in four women and girls struggle to afford period products, directly impacting their ability to fully participate in school, the workplace and society. 

“Pads and tampons are not luxury items; they are necessities that every individual who menstruates needs and deserves access to,” Otten said. “When students miss class time or entire school days because of a lack access to these basic necessities, this becomes an equity issue. Period poverty isn’t just someone else’s problem – it’s happening right here in Pennsylvania.” 

The issues of period poverty and menstrual equity have been priorities for Otten since her first term in office in 2019, when a student from Owen J. Roberts High School met with Otten to discuss the fact that at her school, students had limited or no access to menstrual hygiene products in the school bathrooms. Otten worked with the student to draft legislation to provide menstrual hygiene products at no cost in each bathroom of public schools serving students in grades 6 through 12. She has reintroduced the bill in each legislative session, most recently as H.B. 799.   

As an active member of the bipartisan, bicameral Pennsylvania Women’s Health Caucus, Otten has worked with legislators from across the state to advance legislation that would address period poverty in our schools. Most recently, Otten cosponsored H.B. 851, introduced by state Rep. Darisha Parker, D-Philadelphia, which would establish a grant program for eligible public schools to provide menstrual hygiene products to students. Parker’s bill, which passed the House with bipartisan support on June 4, aligns with Gov. Josh Shapiro’s request for funding to provide menstrual hygiene products in schools that he made during his state budget address in February.

“We have made real progress since 2019. Less than five years after I originally introduced my legislation, we heard Governor Shapiro advocate for menstrual equity in his 2024 budget address, and First Lady of Pennsylvania Lori Shapiro joined us at this year’s Menstrual Equity Rally,” Otten said. “We can and must do better for Pennsylvania’s students and provide them with these basic supplies while they’re at school – just as we provide other essentials such as toilet paper, soap and paper towels. In this year’s budget, we have a chance to level the playing field and ensure dignity and equity for half our population so that they can fully participate in school, the workplace and society.”

Those with questions about the drive can contact Otten’s office at (484)-200-8259 or email