As part of efforts to better the socioeconomic situation of the community, a menstrual cup manufacturing facility, which will be run solely by transgender individuals, is opening up in the capital city of Bihar.
Other initiatives proposed by an NGO include installing canteens in workplaces and opening laser hair removal clinics in each region of the state. Reshma Prasad, founder-secretary of the NGO, Dostanasafar, said that all these initiatives are meant to generate employment for transgender people. “These centres will be run by transgenders only. But anyone can buy the products or services offered”, she said.
First-Of- Its-Kind In Bihar
The 2011 Census shows that there are 40,827 transgender people living in Bihar. Dostanasafar has been given land by the state government to build the menstruation cup manufacturing facility close to Gandhi Maidan.
“We raised funds through crowdfunding and constructed the building on our own. Now, we are exploring options to collect funds for purchasing manufacturing machines. We have approached the state government also,” Prasad stated, reported The Print.
This will likely be the first menstrual cup production facility in the state, according to Prasad, who previously served as a member of the state Transgender Welfare Board.
Menstrual cups are tiny, flexible, funnel-shaped objects that are put into women's intimate areas during periods and are made of silicone or rubber. Cups are more cost-effective since they can hold more blood than other devices.
According to Prasad, who is also a member of the National Council for Transgender Persons (NCTP), a statutory body of the central government in Delhi, one laser treatment centre is already operational in a transgender community dormitory on the outskirts of Patna.
The state government has implemented a number of welfare initiatives to better the socioeconomic situation of transgender individuals, according to Prashant Kumar C H, Director of the Directorate of Social Welfare-cum-Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities. However, when it comes to new proposals, the department is reviewing them, he added.
A Dignified Life For Transgenders
The establishment of "Kinnar ki Rasoi," canteens staffed by transgender people, in various workplaces throughout the state has also been proposed.
According to him, Bihar has already made it possible for transgender people to be hired by the state police and other government agencies and has combined them with the Other Backward Class (OBC) category to give them access to reservation privileges.
“Our only problem is we don’t have social acceptability. These initiatives will provide employment opportunities and open new ways for a dignified life for the community people,” Prasad said.
Transgender activist Abhina Aher remarked that any effort to better the socioeconomic standing of community members should be commended. “The government must come in support of these initiatives. We will soon organise a Udyog Mela for the transgender people in New Delhi in association with certain ministries,” she further added.
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