On Tuesday, by making menstrual products free in public facilities nationally, Scotland became the first country to legislatively combat this problem.
Periods are a biological predisposition to a female being born, and the average female will menstruate more than 2,500 days, or about 7 years, of her life, but many women and girls can not afford period products around the world. On Tuesday, by making menstrual products free in public facilities nationally, Scotland became the first country to legislatively combat this problem.
In a tweet on Tuesday, the Scottish Parliament announced that the bill had passed unanimously. According to the website of the parliament, the legislation allows the Scottish Government to set up a standardized scheme such that they can be purchased for free by anyone in need of period products. It would also require schools, colleges and universities to make free menstrual products available in restrooms. It will be the responsibility of local authorities and education providers to ensure that free products are made available under the legislation.
Based on the number of menstruating individuals in Scotland, it is estimated that the new legislation would cost the Scottish government approximately £ 8.7 million in 2022/23. However, the figure might differ according to the usage of the products.
The bill was presented by Member of the Scottish Parliament Monica Lennon in April 2019. After the bill passed on Tuesday, she tweeted that it was "about bloody time."
Lennon described the harsh realities of period poverty in Scotland and the rest of the UK in a paper calling for free period goods that was published in 2017. Increasing poverty levels in Scotland in general, she said, forced women to choose between buying food or menstrual items.
"Despite the fact that a pack of sanitary pads can be found in most supermarkets for a couple of pounds and might not seem like a huge expense — when you have no or very little income, it can be insurmountable," she wrote.
There were nearly 220,000 girls and women between the ages of 12 and 54 living in relative poverty after housing expenses as of 2018, according to the Scottish government's website.
A lack of appropriate menstrual products may have an adverse effect on personal health. Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS), which can be fatal, can result from excessive tampon use. Those with additional health conditions may need more items for a period of time than the average per month, causing a higher cost burden. It can also contribute to anxiety, as many women and girls experience feelings of guilt or humiliation about their periods and even though they can not afford them, are uncomfortable asking for items.
In 2017, Global Children's Charity Plan International published statistics showing that a shortage of menstrual products was a prevalent issue in the United Kingdom among women and girls, largely due to cost.
By 10% of girls in the U.K., according to the organization, Sanitary items such as pads and tampons can not be afforded, and 15 percent of girls in the U.K. Fight in order to buy them. In the four nations, Scotland, England, Wales and Northern Ireland, another 19 percent of girls had to use less suitable goods because of cost. In the U.K., just under 50 percent of girls Because of their cycles, they mentioned having skipped school.
The central government of Britain has also taken measures this year to tackle the poverty of the period. It was revealed in March that, according to the BBC, the existing 5 percent sales tax on sanitary goods, long known as the 'tampon tax,' will no longer apply from January 2021.