The Scottish Parliament has unanimously passed a law to make feminine hygiene products free.

This makes Scotland the first country in the world to take that step.

The measure is necessary because of so-called '

period poverty

', where women and girls are deprived of basic hygiene products due to a lack of money.

New Scottish law provides that tampons and sanitary towels are freely available in certain public places such as community centers, youth clubs and pharmacies.

This will cost the Scottish taxpayer around £ 24 million (about € 27 million) annually.

Scottish Prime Minister Nicola Sturgeon called it "important policies for women and girls".

“Proud to vote for this groundbreaking legislation that makes Scotland the first country in the world to provide free menstrual products to anyone who needs them,” she wrote on Twitter.

"Nobody should be concerned about where their next tampon, sanitary napkin or reusable product comes from," said Scottish Labor MP Monica Lennon, the author of the bill.

"Scotland won't be the last country to refer period poverty to history, but we could be the first," said Lennon.

In 2018, Scotland became the first country to offer free hygiene products in schools and universities.

Some 10 percent of girls in Great Britain cannot afford menstrual products, a 2017 survey revealed.

Many of them therefore skipped school during their period.

There is also a lack of money for tampons and sanitary towels in the Netherlands

Development organization Plan International and the feminist platform De Bovengrondse stated in 2019 that 9 percent of Dutch girls and women between 12 and 25 years old sometimes have too little money to be able to buy tampons or sanitary towels.

Because they do not dare to talk about this, the effects of this menstrual poverty in the Netherlands remain underexposed.

"What makes menstrual poverty different from the bigger problem of poverty is the taboo that rests on it," said Plan International researcher Mascha Singeling last year.

"A double taboo: discussing your lack of money is already difficult, talking about your period is an additional factor. Some women who need help - when it comes to their period - do not dare to ask their care providers about it, for example."

A quarter of the girls and women surveyed say that they do not dare to speak properly about menstruation at all.

Almost half of the respondents say they feel dirty while menstruating.

Every day 800 million girls and women worldwide have their periods.