Scotland has become the first country to allow free access to menstrual products, including tampons and pads, in public facilities.
The Scottish Parliament unanimously passed the Period Products (Free Provision) (Scotland) Bill — which is designed to create a legal obligation for the government to ensure sanitary products are free and accessible for all females who menstruate, including tampons and pads in public facilities nationwide.
According to estimates from the Scottish government, the cost to implement the legislation will be about £24 million annually (almost $32 million). The Bill was introduced by Scottish Parliament member Monica Lennon. Lennon’s aim was to tackle “period poverty,” and aid those who need menstrual products but can’t afford them.
“A proud day for Scotland and a signal to the world that free universal access to period products can be achieved,” Lennon tweeted Tuesday.
Scotland will not be the last country to make period poverty history,” she said. “Legislation is a world-leading opportunity to secure period dignity for all women, girls, and people who menstruate.”
Lennon also noted that the country “has already taken great strides to improve access to period products.” In 2018, Scotland made menstrual products free in schools, colleges, and universities.