Scotland has become the first country in the world to have legally made products freely available to all.
The MSPs in the Scottish Parliament unanimously introduced a bill by Labor Health spokeswoman Monica Lennon to bring about the legal right to free access to items such as tampons and sanitary pads.
Ms Lennon said the Period Products (Free Provision) (Scotland) Bill was part of a “practical and progressive” legislation, as the coronavirus epidemic became more important.
He said: “Epidemics will not stop for epidemics and the task of improving access to the necessary tampons, pads and reusables has never been more important.”
Labor has been working to alleviate poverty during the MSP term since he was elected to Holiday in 2011.
He said: “I am proud that Scotland is moving forward on the issue of period dignity and we are moving very fast in a short period of time.”
Mrs Lennon told the MSP: “We are here because we work together. We have shown that this Parliament can be a force for progressive change when we cooperate.
“Our reward is the opportunity to capture time in the history of poverty. In this dark time we can bring light and hope to the world this evening.”
His bill passed by a margin of 121 votes after winning the support of the Scottish Government and other opposition parties in Hollywood.
Scotland Community Secretary Aileen Campbell praised the law as “an important moment for gender equality”.
“It’s a great opportunity for me to be here today and we will be committed to making Scotland the first country in the world to legislate to ensure that free period products are available to everyone who needs them,” he said.
Ms Campbell added: “This law will do much to promote equality and social justice here in Scotland and elsewhere as we try to follow in our footsteps like other countries.”
Rose Caldwell, chief executive of Charity Plan International UK, said: “During this world-first commitment, the Scottish Government has shown itself to be a leader in tackling poverty, and we hope that countries around the world will follow its lead.
“With this groundbreaking law, Scotland could soon become the first country in the world to alleviate poverty once and for all, and the need for family financing under the pressure of coronavirus restrictions has never been greater.
“This new law will help ensure that no girl or woman in Scotland fights for the supply of temporary goods.”
He added that the role of the law would be “critical”, saying: “Periodic poverty is governed by a‘ toxic trio ’of issues, including the lack of education at the top of the period commodity spending and the stigma and shame surrounding it.
“We know, for example, that only one-third (31%) of schools in Scotland feel comfortable asking teachers for period products.
“That’s why we need education and training for girls, schools and parents to help them deal with stigma and embarrassment around them, in addition to free products, duration and cost.”
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