In a move that we will all look back on one day and wonder how it took so long, Scotland became the first country to provide free period products.
That means women can pick up tampons and sanitary pads at designated public places. They include community centres, youth clubs and pharmacies. Free sanitary products have been available in Scottish schools, colleges and universities since 2018.
“No one should have to worry about where their next tampon, pad or reusable is coming from,” said Scottish Labour Member of Parliament Monica Lennon. “Scotland will not be the last country to consign period poverty to history, but we have the chance to be the first.”
The policy will cost taxpayers $42 million CDN annually. It’s a small sum to end period poverty, which affects 10 per cent of girls in the U.K. Period poverty is defined as inaccess to period products either financially or because of unavailability. It affects nearly one-quarter of Canadian women.
It is estimated that Canadian women spend up to $6,000 in their lifetime on menstrual hygiene products.