Nov. 24 (UPI) -- Scotland approved legislation on Tuesday making it the first nation to provide free access to menstrual products nationwide.
The bill introduced by member of the Scottish Parliament Monica Lennon creates a series of requirements to combat "period poverty," a term describing situations in which people who need period products are unable to afford them.
Under the legislation, the Scottish government will be required to set up a nationwide program to allow anyone who needs period products to get them free of charge. This includes requiring schools, colleges and universities to make a range of products available for free in bathrooms and granting the government the power to make other public bodies provide the products for free.
Scotland made menstrual hygiene products free for students at schools and universities two years ago.
The Scottish government estimated the new program will cost about $32 million annually.
Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon praised the passage of the legislation on Twitter Tuesday.
"Proud to vote for this groundbreaking legislation, making Scotland the first country in the world to provide free period products for all who need them An important policy for women and girls," she wrote.