Scotland makes period products free for those in need! New Zealand should follow

Scotland makes period products free for those in need! New Zealand should follow

We’re ecstatic that Scotland is providing free period products for all those that need them. 

We’ve been looking to Scotland as the leader in this space ever since they first announced free period products in schools back in 2017. And now NZ is looking to do the same. 

Our hope is that our government follows suit soon too and would love to talk to them about it. Period poverty exacerbates gendered inequity and there is a simple and reasonably inexpensive solution available – providing free products. 

The provision of period products should be viewed the same way as we view toilet paper in New Zealand - it’s a basic need and requirement. Those without the income or access shouldn’t be expected to go without it. 

At Dignity we have seen the demand from community groups, such as libraries where many displaced people go, grow significantly since Covid-19 hit and we are currently not able to meet demand. The need is real here too. 

In the meantime if you want to help you can support Dignity with our mission to deliver period equity to those without access. 

Recommendations for Aotearoa: 

  • There is no Bill or legislation in New Zealand to ensure period products are provided to those in need. We would recommend Pāremata Aotearoa (Parliament) introduce similar legislation to codify the provision of products similar to Scotland

  • We implore the government to continue to fund period products for schools in the 2021/2022 Budget

  • We want to see strict guildelines like the Scotland bill ensuring easy access, privacy plus a range of period products in schools and other organisations

  • Give the leadership and control to Ministers to have access of products mandated in other groups such as universities, hospitals, prisons and public places

You can watch the video interview of Jacinta DIgnity co-founder on Breakfast here:

Period Products (Free Provision) (Scotland) Bill


The Committee launched a call for written evidence on Monday 16 September 2019 as part of its Stage 1 scrutiny of the Period Products (Free Provision) (Scotland) Bill. The Period Products (Free Provision) Scotland Bill was introduced into Parliament by Monica Lennon on 23 April 2019. The Bill's main policy objectives are to ensure that everyone in Scotland who needs to use period products can obtain them free of charge through a "period products scheme" which the Scottish Government would have to set up. The Bill requires primary and secondary schools, colleges and universities to make period products free in all appropriate toilets and enables Ministers to place a similar duty on other organisations. Those using the scheme must be able to obtain period products "reasonably easily" and with "reasonable privacy" and can choose to have products delivered or collected. The scheme must also ensure that a choice of different types of period products are available. Under the Bill, Scottish Ministers must publicise the scheme and may compensate those obliged to provide free products.

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