Provide free period products across the UK
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Scotland will be the first nation in the world to provide free period products - it's time for the UK to follow their bloody great example.
For too long, those unable to access period products have suffered in silence, afraid to speak about an entirely healthy and natural bodily function which is made infinitely worse without the means to take care of it.
This has forced people to use inappropriate and potentially harmful alternatives, such as socks or newspapers; to use pads or tampons for far too long, with serious health consequences; or to use nothing at all. This has implications for people’s mental health too; not being able to access essential products can lead to both huge panic and low self-esteem.
Scotland's decision is a major win for menstrual equity, recognising that the needs of women and people who menstruate matter, and providing products accordingly, for everyone who needs them. We now need the same kind of decisive leadership and action that we’ve just seen in Scotland, throughout the UK.
Without the work of small charities, including but not limited to Bloody Good Period, people living with limited means or in poverty would be forced to make impossible choices – between tampons and food, or between a nappy for their baby and period products for themselves – or perhaps to use no period products at all. That is the reality for far too many people, and it is not one that should be being solved by small charities and the goodwill of donors.
As we continue to grapple with a world dominated by Covid and its huge array of impacts, we do not believe that anyone should have to worry about their period because they can’t access the products they need. Bloody Good Period have seen a huge increase in demand in the last six months, donating nearly 60,000 packs of pads since March alone.
Access to period products is a matter of human rights, and we call on the UK government to follow Scotland’s example and take decisive action in providing free period products for all.
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