Women are disproportionally affected by toxic plastics

HEJSupport contributed to the Report “The stages of the plastics cycle and their impacts on human rights” prepared by the Special Rapporteur on the implications for human rights of the environmentally sound management and disposal of hazardous substances and wastes, Marcos Orellana. The report inter alia highlights that ” women face a disproportionate amount of the burden of plastic pollution”.

The report notes the threat caused by toxic additives in plastic which include endocrine-disrupting chemicals and other pollutants. It highlights that ” The exposure of pregnant women to such hazardous substances can affect the health of their descendants”.

The author specifically mentions the dangers of plastics in hygiene and menstrual products. The report asserts that “Numerous products, such as tampons, sanitary towels, incontinence materials, and wet wipes, contain plastics with additives that are carcinogenic and hormone-disrupting or cause menstrual disorders and allergies. Such products also generate sizeable amounts of plastic waste. During her lifetime, a woman
generates about 90 kg of waste from menstrual pads and 60 kg of waste from tampons”.

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