Scotland The First Country In The World To Provide Free Access To Period Products

Scotland The First Country In The World To Provide Free Access To Period Products

Scotland The First Country In The World To Provide Free Access To Period Products

Scotland has become the first country in the world to provide free access to period products.

MSPs unanimously passed legislation on Tuesday evening brought forward by Labour health spokeswoman Monica Lennon, bringing in the legal right of free access to menstrual products such as tampons and sanitary pads.

It comes after a four-year campaign spearheaded by Lennon with nationwide grassroots support.

Lennon said the Period Products (Free Provision) (Scotland) Act was a “practical and progressive” piece of legislation, which people need access to more than ever in the midst of the Coronavirus pandemic.

‘Periods don’t stop for pandemics’: Amika George reveals the true impact of period poverty under lockdown

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She said: “Periods don’t stop for pandemics and the work to improve access to essential tampons, pads and reusables has never been more important.”

Lennon also told the Guardian:

“This will make a massive difference to the lives of women and girls and everyone who menstruates.

There has already been great progress at a community level and through local authorities in giving everyone the chance of period dignity.

“There has been a massive change in the way that periods are discussed in public life.

A few years ago there had never been an open discussion of menstruation in the Holyrood chamber and now it is mainstream.

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MSPs have enjoyed being a part of that, and it has encompassed the menopause, endometriosis, as well as the types of products we use and their sustainability.”

Rose Caldwell, chief executive of the charity Plan International UK, said:

“In making this world-first commitment, the Scottish government has shown itself to be a pioneer in tackling period poverty, and we hope that nations around the world will follow its lead.

“With this landmark legislation, Scotland could soon become the first country in the world to eliminate period poverty once and for all, and with household finances under strain from the coronavirus restrictions, the need has never been greater.”

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