Scotland Approves The Period Products Bill
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Scotland approved The Period Products Bill, making it the first country ever to make all period products free. This bill will also ensure that all schools, as well as colleges, provide period products for students to use free of charge.
According to the Scottish Government website, they want to ensure that #TalkPeriods, a campaign that focuses on educating everyone on menstruation and what products are needed, is normalized. Communications Secretary, Aileen Campbell, announced her support for the bill on Feb. 19 and discussed the impact on the Scottish Government.
“Scotland was the first country in the world to make period products available for free in schools and colleges and to support access to period products for those on low incomes. Due to our world-leading action, over half a million people have access to free period products for the first time ever,” Campbell said.
The bill was introduced in 2019 by Labor Member of Scottish Parliament, Monica Lennon, who has been fighting against period poverty since 2016. Lennon emphasized it was critical that the bill get passed amidst the ongoing pandemic.
According to the BBC, Lennon explained that periods never stop, not even for a pandemic, therefore it was critical to find a more suitable way to get these products to everyone in need during these financially difficult times.
A study of 2,000 Scotland students, conducted by Young Scot, found that 1 in 4 stated the struggle to access feminine products. This struck an urgency to break the barrier of a topic so real such as this one.
The purpose was to normalize both the talk of menstruations as well as the open-access to these products for all who need them. Lennon hopes that although Scotland was the first country to approve a bill like this, many countries will follow along and normalize menstruations soon.
“No-one should face the indignity of being unable to access these essential products to manage their period,” said Lennon.