How do I get access to free menstrual products in Scotland?
It’s now a legal right in Scotland to have access to free menstrual products – but how easy is it to get them?
In a world first, public buildings, including libraries, employment centers and educational institutions such as schools, colleges and universities, will be legally required to provide free sanitary pads and tampons. available to those who need it.
Many public buildings already provide sanitary products, with the launch of the PickupMyPeriod app in January this year which can direct those in need to any of the more than 700 sites participating in the scheme.
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On Monday, when the Periodic Products (Free Provision) (Scotland) Act came into effect, The National went to see how easy it was to get your hands on free products.
With a box of tampons typically costing £2-3 in the supermarket, the free service will be a lifesaver for many who simply can’t afford the monthly costs. This is part of the Scottish Government’s bid to eradicate menstrual poverty across the country.
How do I access free menstrual products in Scotland?
First, download the PickupMyPeriod app from your phone’s app store and set your location preferences.
You then have several options. You can check the provider closest to your current location or search for a specific building. Each free product provider on the app has illustrations of the items they provide, for example, reusable tampons, sanitary napkins or menstrual cups. Some suppliers also advertise whether they use plastic-free products.
Each location is labeled with a blood droplet pin on a map. When you click on the location marker, it then provides you with details of what each building provides, the hours of operation and the toilets the products are available in, ie. feminine, masculine or gender neutral.
The app also shows the time it would take to get to the location by car or on foot.
Once you have chosen your nearest supplier, go there to pick up your free menstrual products.
Sanitary ware can be found in bathrooms where you can pick them up no questions asked.
The PickupMyPeriod app is available on IOS and Android.