Getting a period while being poor is an important issue that is seldom discussed. In the UK, a study found that 15% of girls struggle to afford sanitary products and 19% have settled to less favorable items due to cost.
Moreover, it has been found that there is a stigma of having a period. Another study found that 74% of girls between the age of 14 and 21 felt embarrassed when buying period-related products.
Due to these findings, the Scottish Parliament will pass a law that will make it the first country in the world to make sanitary products available for free. It will give “anyone who needs them” access to products “relatively easily” with “reasonable privacy.”
Photo from @LGBTIScotland
This move is considered a landmark event that will emphasize menstrual hygiene a basic human right.
The Period Products Scotland Bill was proposed by Scottish lawmaker Monica Lennon. “These are not luxury items. They are indeed essential and no one in Scotland should have to go without period products,” Lennon said, adding that the bill was about “period dignity.”
Under the law, products will be made available for free at pharmacies, youth centers, and community centers.
A couple of years ago, the country also became the pioneer in making sanitary products free in all schools, colleges, and universities.
“We will continue our world-leading action promoting wider period dignity through a certification scheme to encourage organizations to provide free products,” Aileen Campbell, Scotland’s communities secretary, said.
Unfortunately, period products in the UK are still subject to a 5% tax. Former prime minister David Cameron was looking into eliminating it but his hands were tied due to European Union rules.
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