Scotland becomes first country to make period products free

Scotland has become the first country in the world to pass legislation making period products free to all.

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The period poverty bill means councils will have to provide sanitary products to anyone who needs them. Source: Breakfast

Members of the Scottish Parliament tonight unanimously passed the Bill to end period poverty by 121 votes to zero.

"Proud to vote for this ground-breaking legislation, making Scotland the first country in the world to provide free period products for all who need them," Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon tweeted.

The historic vote comes after a three-year campaign by Scottish Labour’s health spokeswoman Monica Lennon.

"This legislation will do much to advance equality and social justice here in Scotland and elsewhere, as other countries seek to follow our path," she said.

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Josephine Falefa and Saiaisi Pita spoke to Tagata Pasifika about the impact period poverty has on students’ education. Source: Tagata Pasifika

In 2018, free sanitary products are currently funded in schools and colleges but this landmark legislation voted for tonight has made that law and goes further, granting universal access to anyone who needs them.

It's estimated women spend $10,000 over a lifetime on period products but not everyone can afford them, leading to so-called period poverty.

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The PM said she is personally looking into it. Source: 1 NEWS

Research suggests one in 10 girls across the UK has been unable to afford period products, and twice as many have used a less suitable product due to cost.

The government initiative is expected to cost an estimated $20 million a year, but for many who felt the financial burden they say the support will be invaluable.