Scotland has become the world's first nation to make sanitary products free for all, according to Period Products (Free Provision) Bill unanimously passed today by the approval of members of the Scottish parliament.
It means period products will be available to access in public buildings including schools and universities across Scotland. According to the new rules, it will be up to local authorities and education providers to ensure the products are available free of charge.
The Period Products (Free Provision) (Scotland) Bill has been passed unanimously by MSPs this evening.— Scottish Parliament (@ScotParl) November 24, 2020
Find out more about what the Bill sets out to change: https://t.co/pdkiesJxGG pic.twitter.com/Pfz2TqJIP7
The Bill was introduced by Scottish Parliament member Monica Lennon, who has been campaigning to end period poverty since 2016. After the vote, Lennon said the decision was "a signal to the world that free universal access to period products can be achieved."
Proud to vote for this groundbreaking legislation, making Scotland the first country in the world to provide free period products for all who need them. An important policy for women and girls. Well done to @MonicaLennon7 @ClydesdAileen and all who worked to make it happen https://t.co/4lckZ4ZYIY— Nicola Sturgeon (@NicolaSturgeon) November 24, 2020
Nicola Sturgeon, the first minister of Scotland, posted on Twitter shortly after the vote on Tuesday evening that she was “proud to vote for this groundbreaking legislation” and congratulated Monica Lennon.
Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon wrote "Proud to vote for this groundbreaking legislation, making Scotland the first country in the world to provide free period products for all who need them. An important policy for women and girls".
Because periods don’t stop in a pandemic, we didn’t give up. The final vote on the Period Products (Free Provision) (Scotland) Bill is on Tuesday. ????????#freeperiodproducts— Monica Lennon (@MonicaLennon7) November 22, 2020
Thank you to every single person who has made this possible. ❤️
Latest news ????https://t.co/jEmCiyjLe1 pic.twitter.com/fe5TFYrsOP
The measure will make sanitary pads and tampons freely available at nearly all public places including community centers, youth clubs, and pharmacies, at an estimated cost of 8.7 million pounds a year by 2022. Schools, colleges, and universities will also be mandated to make feminine hygiene products accessible to students.
However, the products will not be free in total but only for those needing urgency in stores, shopping centers, public spaces, schools, colleges/universities, hospitals, etc.