A picture taken in Nantes on February 24, 2016 shows tampons. Residual amounts of potentially toxic substances were found in sanitary pads and tampons, French consumer rights group "60 Millions de Consommateurs" announced, urging the government to impose stricter control on the products. / AFP / LOIC VENANCE (Photo credit should read LOIC VENANCE/AFP/Getty Images)

Scotland is to lead the way in the fight against “period poverty” by giving more than 1,000 women and girls on low incomes free sanitary products for six months.
The pilot project, announced on Tuesday by Equalities Secretary Angela Constance, will focus on seven regeneration areas in Aberdeen.
The project, if taken forward, will make Scotland the first country in the world to provide free feminine sanitary products to low-income women and girls. A similar scheme was trialled in New York, but this is the first country-level plan of its kind.
Ministers intend to use the results of the pilot to inform national guidance on tackling the issue of period poverty, which can result in some women being unable to afford sanitary products.
Unlike many other medical products, women’s sanitary items are still subject to 5 per cent VAT in the UK, with the Government so far resisting calls to ditch the so-called “tampon tax”.
The …
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