No, Scotland did not just pass a bill to provide menstrual products to all in need

Or, more accurately, it has not passed the bill yet. Despite exuberant recent news headlines to the contrary, Scotland did not just pass a bill to provide menstrual products for all in need. At this juncture, the bill in question has only passed the first of many procedural stages on its journey to possible final passage. This post summarizes the political process that this bill still faces to potentially becoming a global first, while analyzing how accuracy can matter in news and social media sharing about global progress on menstrual hygiene issues.

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Uplifting the Girl Child (Burundi)

Grace Ningejeje came to Dartmouth in 2017 through the YALI Mandela Program to work on a project on menstrual hygiene in her home country of Burundi, a country facing a tremendous degree of menstrual stigma combined with unusually high degrees of poverty and school dropout rates by girls. IMHER was developed to help Grace – and by extension, other innovators like her — to gather much of the foundational information usually needed to get started in this work, and that can help an organization to grow. In the meantime, Grace has been making considerable progress at home, with a new organization focused on education, disposable pad donations, and a newly published book for girls in her country about menstrual hygiene. But she is still trying to figure out how to produce commercially viable pads in a place where little disposable income exists for most families, and where the almost-never discussed challenges faced by girls do not tend to get ranked highly among other pressing family needs. 

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MHM Policy in the U.S.

MHM Policy in the U.S. In recent years, a good deal of progress has been made on menstrual health policy in the U.S. However, a major challenge is that find useful information about which legislation has been passed in the U.S. has a “needle in a haystack” kind of quality to it.  That is largely due to federalism, in which individual states are responsible for governing on the many issues not handled by the national, i.e., "federal", government.  Relatedly, a marked decline in media coverage of state and local government actions has compounded the challenge of tracking that progress. In the U.S., 50 largely independent state governments handle…
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