The Student News Site of Clemson University

The Tiger

The Tiger

The Tiger

Clemson removes menstrual products from men’s bathroom

The men’s bathrooms in Cooper Library no longer have menstrual products after Clemson University removed them last month.

Less than a year after Clemson announced it would provide free menstrual products in all the restrooms in Cooper Library, the University removed the products from the men’s facilities three days after a conservative student group posted about the dispensers in the men’s bathrooms.

Clemson College Republicans posted a picture of one of the period product dispensers to its X, formerly known as Twitter, account on Sept. 13, writing, “If you weren’t aware already, Clemson University has tampon/pad dispensers in the MEN’S restrooms located in Cooper Library. We truly live in (clown) world,” using the clown emoji in place of the word.

The post caught the attention of April Cromer, a Republican member of the South Carolina House of Representatives representing District 6, and the dispensers were removed from the men’s restrooms on Sept. 16, just three days after Clemson College Republicans’ initial post.

Cromer celebrated the menstrual products removal in an X post, stating that Clemson President Jim Clements and board of trustee member John N. (Nicky) McCarter Jr. were both in favor of their removal.

@NickyMccarter and @ClemsonPrez was just as shocked as I was that these dispensers were in the men’s restroom.” Cromer wrote, speaking of the period products. “@ClemsonPrez had these unauthorized dispensers removed ASAP!”

The menstrual products were initially funded by Clemson’s Graduate Student Government and installed last November by The Period Project, a national organization that aims to make menstrual products accessible to individuals who need them.

Former GSG President Kaitlyn Samons told The Tiger in a phone interview that there were no political motives behind the original installation of the menstrual products.

“The whole point was to put them in every bathroom and make period product access available to all students who need them,” Samons said. “There was no political machinations in the background.”

Geoff Gilson, another former member of GSG, echoed Samons’ statement that the instillation of the period product dispensers in the Cooper Library bathrooms was not political.

“I suspect that there was never any political tone to the manner in which the dispensers were installed,” Gilson told The Tiger in an email. “It was more about tampons than gender identity.”

Samons told The Tiger that she believes Clemson’s decision to remove the dispensers was the University’s attempt to stay out of the political spotlight and please the South Carolina legislature.

Gilson agreed with Samons.

“SC is a Republican state, controlled by a Republican majority state legislature,” Gilson said. “That legislature provides 10% of Clemson’s operating revenues. If we make them unhappy, who is going to make up the lost 10%? Students?”

However, Clemson College Republicans thought the University took action against the dispensers for logistical reasons.

“Placing tampon and pad dispensers in the men’s restrooms of Cooper Library is illogical, wasteful, and delusional,” Clemson College Republicans told The Tiger in an email. “It is a complete embarrassment that they were put there.”

There are currently no plans to reinstall the product dispensers in the men’s bathrooms, but Clemson University spokesperson Joe Galbraith told The Tiger in an email that the products are still available in women’s and family restrooms.

View Comments (3)
Donate to The Tiger

Your donation will support the student journalists of Clemson University . Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
About the Contributor
Blake Mauro
Blake Mauro, Editor-in-Chief
Donate to The Tiger

Comments (3)

All The Tiger Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • G

    Geoff GilsonOct 5, 2023 at 10:08 am

    I would add this. I support the right of everyone to express their identity – provided it does not unreasonably interfere with someone else’s identity. Bear in mind, white, Republican, male heterosexual is just as much an identity as transexual male. We have 30,000 individual identities on campus. If we want any semblance of harmony, we all need to respect each other’s identity – however difficult we may find that. This needs compromise. Having period products still available for transexual males in family bathrooms is just such a compromise.

    • D

      D.B.Oct 5, 2023 at 5:29 pm

      Please tell me how having tampons for trans men in the men’s room is “interfering” with heterosexual male identity? If they don’t need them, then they don’t need to use them.

      Taking away supplies from people who actually need them because someone else wants to discriminate is ridiculous.

      • N

        Noah GroomersOct 15, 2023 at 12:40 am

        FYI: men don’t use tampons. What’s so confusing? Sex isn’t cosplay… Women with fetishes to dress up as a reductive male stereotype should be prepared, come with their own tampons.