Posted on February 21, 2019
Scotland became the first country in the world to provide free sanitary products to all students in schools, colleges and universities.
Many women and girls struggle to afford sanitary products worldwide. A recent study has shown that many students experience period poverty every month. The Scottish government decided to end the period poverty by supplying around 395,000 students with free sanitary products. An investment of £5.2 million will be required to provide this number of students with free access to sanitary products.
The Scottish government is implementing this new measure to end the suffering of the female students in Scotland. Struggling to purchase the basic sanitary products on a monthly basis has a significant impact on the girls' hygiene, health and well-being. Moreover, another study has shown that many girls miss school days during their menstruation.
Hungary charges 27% of VAT on basic sanitary products, while Ireland and Belgium exempt sanitary products from VAT. This means that Scotland is the world leader when it comes to providing girls with their monthly basic needs. It does not stop here. Monica Lennon, a member of the Scottish Labour Party, stated that the Scottish parliament will be moving forward with this measure. "Access to period products should be a right, regardless of your income, which is why I am moving ahead with plans for legislation to introduce a universal system of free access to period products for everyone in Scotland", says Lennon.