The Government is "actively" looking at possible solutions to period poverty, with Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern revealing today she is personally exploring ideas.
A petition was handed to Parliament this morning, with more than 3000 people calling on Government to "provide period products for all students, including sustainable options to give choice, and commit to comprehensive menstrual health education".
Jacinta Gulasekharam of Dignity NZ, an organisaion that provides sanitary products to companies and then donates the equivalent to high schools around the country, created the petition.
"We feel that current period poverty initiatives here aren’t reaching those in need," the petition states.
It had previously been reported by TVNZ some families had kept girls home from school as they could not afford sanitary products, while others used newspaper or cardboard instead.
Speaking to media today, Ms Ardern voiced sympathy for the issue.
"This is an issue raised really consistently," she said. "It's something I'm personally looking into and working on some ideas and solutions."
She said there was already a "mechanism in place" but said questions remain regarding "whether or not it's got the reach that we need".
"I don't want to get ahead of anything before final decisions are made but, needless to say, it is something we're looking at."
She said she hopes a solution will be reached before next year's budget.