THE MP for Clwyd West, David Jones, has received an answer to the written question he submitted regarding efforts to make it a legal requirement to provide sanitary bins in all male toilets.

Last month, one of Mr Jones’ constituents, 68-year-old Raymond Starr, said that urinary incontinence, which can be a consequence of the surgery undertaken to treat prostate cancer, can feel “like a flowing tap”.

The charity Prostate Cancer UK is leading the “Boys Need Bins” campaign, with Raymond saying that urinary incontinence can leave men feeling “embarrassed, stressed and isolated”.

North Wales Pioneer: Raymond StarrRaymond Starr (Image: Ceri Llwyd)


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In an effort to support the campaign, Mr Jones sent a written question on the subject on September 19 to the UK Government’s Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

He asked the secretary of state for environment, food and rural affairs, Thérèse Coffey, “what recent assessment she has made of the potential merits of requiring local authorities to provide bins for the disposal of incontinence pads in men's public lavatories”.

Mr Jones then received a response on October 17 from Rebecca Pow, parliamentary under-secretary of state for environmental quality and resilience.

She replied: “The Government encourages local authorities to consider such provision in public toilets to support those with this need but does not have powers to compel the provision of sanitary bins in public toilets.

“I would encourage the honourable member to raise the issue locally.”

Last month, Mr Jones told the Journal/Pioneer: “I can well understand Mr Starr's concern. He suffers from a distressing condition and the absence of bins simply adds to his stress.

“In Wales, this is a devolved issue for Welsh Government. However, as he points out, it is also a national issue.

“I am, therefore, tabling a question to the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, enquiring as to what consideration it has given to introducing a mandatory requirement to provide such bins.”

Nick Ridgman, head of health information and clinical support at Prostate Cancer UK, labelled the issue of male incontinence a “taboo” subject.

He added that the charity “won’t rest until we squash the stigma around this issue”.