Scotland has made history by passing a bill that makes period products like tampons and menstrual pads completely free. Yes, you read that right: free.
According to the Scottish Parliament website, Member of the Scottish Parliament Monica Lennon introduced the bill as a way to tackle period poverty — that is, when people who need sanitary products can’t afford them. This is more than an inconvenience. People who can’t afford sanitary products can end up ruining their own clothes or getting infections from objects that aren’t supposed to be used as menstrual products. And of course, having access to sanitary products is a matter of basic human dignity.
“She sees these products as a basic necessity, and believes that providing access to them is important for people’s dignity. She supports what the Scottish Government has already done to provide free period products to those in need. She wants to go further by making this a legal requirement,” says the website.
The bill was passed unanimously yesterday and requires the Scottish government to ensure that anyone who needs period products can get them for free. All educational institutions, from primary and high schools to universities, must also offer sanitary products in their restrooms for free. Should they need to, the Scottish government will also have the power to make other institutions offer period products for free as well.
This may seem like an unnecessary freebie for people who don’t get periods, but those who do are probably breathing a sigh of relief if they live in Scotland. Sanitary products are pricey, and they add up over time! For people who are struggling to make ends meet or simply would rather spend their money on groceries, bills, or literally anything else, this is a great step forward!
Do you think other countries will follow in Scotland’s footsteps? Let us know in the comments!