Period Of Change Webinar 3: Dealing with menstrual hygiene waste

Despite the relatively low penetration of disposable pads in the market with an estimated 12% of the menstruating population using pads, India is already reeling from the magnitude of menstrual hygiene waste being produced. This growing stream of reject waste, due to ambiguities inherent in India’s waste laws, confounds researchers, social workers, and policy makers alike. In this panel, waste management experts discuss the pros and cons of various collection and disposal methods and examine best, field ­tested practices for dealing with this form of waste. An environmental lawyer also gives an overview of the laws that pertain to this form of waste.

We are starting Week 3 of our #periodofchange campaign with the webinar on Saturday, May 9th 12-01 pm IST. The theme for this – Dealing with menstrual hygiene waste: Collection and disposal issues. 

Dhirendra Pratap Singh

dhirendrasinghDhirendra is the President and co-­founder of Milaan, a youth-­led non­-profit organization to empower socially and economically challenged youth. With a Masters degree in Development Studies from Amity University, he has also been a recipient of the Karamveer Puruskar and Youth Ambassador for Peace Award by Universal Peace Federation on 24th Jan 2007. In the past, Dhirendra has worked with many international and national development organizations like Vidya Grants India, United Way of Delhi, ASER, etc. He is also the Co-founder of Azadi, an US based impact venture, with a commitment to making menstruation a non-­issue in India.



Ina Jurga

inajurgaIna is WASH United’s Head of WASH in Schools. A trained civil engineer, she’s been active in the sanitation sector for almost 10 years, working for German Government, UNICEF and WSSCC in China, North Korea, Uganda and Switzerland and other countries.

Now, at WASH United, Ina puts all her passion and energy into developing fun and game­based behaviour change interventions for schools and communities around sanitation, hygiene and menstrual hygiene management. She also leads the Secretariat for “Menstrual Hygiene Day“ a global partnership initiative to both break taboos and improve menstruation management in countries across the world.


Pratibha Sharma

Pratibha SharmaPratibha is the India Coordinator for the Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives – an international network of more than 1000 grassroots groups and individuals, organizing to replace polluting industries such as incinerators with community ­based solutions rooted in the principles of environmental justice and zero waste. Over the past four years, Pratibha has worked on the issue of gender justice, waste and labor issue, and climate change. She provides technical, communication and media support to communities fighting unsustainable waste management projects in the cities of India. Prior working with GAIA, she has worked with a Pune based waste picker’s collective – SWaCH.



Harshad Barde



Harshad is an activist working with Kagad Kach Patra Kashtakari Panchayat, Pune (Maharashtra), which is the largest and oldest registered trade union of Waste­Pickers in India. With a background in law, he is involved in advocacy relating to waste, labour, environment, social security etc.



G. Vijay Kumar

G. Vijay Kumar is a Social Worker, Chennai who has filed a case in the National Green Tribunal, Southern Bench, on behalf of public interest, against six corporations that manufacture disposable sanitary pads.

Watch the recorded webinar here:

This post is part of Period Of Change, a 5-week campaign organized by The Kachra Project along with Earth&us that aims to mobilize people (both men and women) around menstrual waste as a starting point to lobby for change in current practices in MH waste management.

Sign the petition to amend Draft Municipal Solid Wastes (Management and Handling) Rules, 2015  referred to as MSW Rules 2015 be amended for proper management of absorbent hygiene product waste (which includes menstrual hygiene waste).


In this Period of Change, hygienic sustainable menstruation for all can be ensured by:

4 votes – Making cloth pads and infrastructure for care of cloth pads accessible to all – 11%
6 votes – Investing in R & D to make biodegradable disposable pads – 17%
4 votes – Giving women a choice in the use of products but ensuring that they take responsibility for safe disposal – 11%
2 votes – Amending MSW Rules 2015 for proper management of absorbent hygiene product waste – 6%
19 votes – All of the above – 54%

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