This week, a bill was introduced in California to eliminate the “luxury”, “tampon tax” or “sin tax” on taxes on tampons, pads and other feminine hygiene products. If you’re scratching your heads, let us help you to get caught up.
Most of us have never stopped to wonder why we pay a tax for our menstrual products which are necessities for most women. In most states and countries around the world, there is a tax on tampons and pads because states see them luxury items for women. Now, we don’t know about you, but we’ve never felt luxurious buying tampons and pads. Ever. Not even the organic tampons that are better for our vaginas and the environment. Nope. Still not luxurious. Even the Presidents thinks the Michelle “would agree on that.”
Canada’s Parliament voted unanimously to eliminate its tampon tax earlier this year. In the US, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Jersey and Pennsylvania have all eliminated the tax but we still have a bit of a ways to go. Not surprisingly, Viagra was already exempt from the tax in California. It all makes sense when you think about who writes and pushes through most laws. These are the same people who thought prescription medication, candy and farm equipment shouldn’t be taxed. The tax is even odd to President Obama who admitted he had not idea that it existed either, “I have to tell you, I have no idea why states would tax [menstrual products] as luxury items. I suspect it’s because men were making the laws when those taxes were passed.”
People with uteruses should not be paying extra for menstrual products especially since most of us can’t control our periods. The idea that pads, tampons and other menstrual products are nonessentials is simple ridiculous especially since in most states band-aids are exempt from sales tax.
If you want to help to support the national push to end the tampon tax in all US states, you can sign the Change.org petition here.