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To not understand the issue with 'tampon tax'?

(198 Posts)
QuackPorridgeBacon Tue 22-Aug-17 18:29:30

Here me out. I will admit I don't understand it much and any insight would be great. I don't see an issue with a tax though.

I understand that things like razors and alcohol jellies (?) aren't taxed and I can see why that is annoying. We also don't choose to have periods so I get that argument too. Aren't they nasty to dispose of though? Wouldn't the tax just be paying those who are sorting through it all and disposing of it appropriately? Or am I being seriously thick?

I know I could go and do a google search and probably find answers but honestly, I'd rather ask on here as I'm lazy.

imamouseduh Tue 22-Aug-17 18:30:36

Well do you have a choice as to whether you get your period or not?

Booboobooboo84 Tue 22-Aug-17 18:32:00

Because tax is meant to be applied to things that are non essential. So by applying a tax to sanitary products the government is sending the message that it's optional when in fact it isn't. Therefore penalising women financially and not men. The tax is a general tax applied to goods classed as luxury. It's not a specific tampon tax so doesn't go towards disposal etc.

ChardonnaysPrettySister Tue 22-Aug-17 18:35:21

The money from the tax isn't used for disposal of the tampons.
We all pay council tax for our rubbish disposal.

It's a women's only item, we need them. It's not a luxury.

Regularsizedrudy Tue 22-Aug-17 18:35:45

The tax is because they are classed as a luxury it doesn't go towards disposing of them

solarisIsAClassic Tue 22-Aug-17 18:37:44

I'm with you OP.

Texes don't tend to be fenced off. It goes into a big pot as opposed to £x for this and £y for that.

I think the issue is that men don't use them and therefore it's 'sexist'.

Ttbb Tue 22-Aug-17 18:37:46

It doesn't cost anymore to dispose of tampons. They just go into landfill. The reason why they are taxed despite obviously being necessities is that u derEU directive they are not classified as such and must incur a minimum 5% tax. As such it becomes a feminist issue (because majority male have misckassofed them as such) and also an issue of sovereignty of parliament and nationhood (because U.K. Politicians and U.K. Citizens by extension are powerless to remove the tax).

napmeistergeneral Tue 22-Aug-17 18:38:01

Do you really think there are people who sort through tampons and towels? Not trying to mock I'm just genuinely surprised that anyone would think that was a thing. Booboo is correct. This is also quite a good explanation of the issues around the tampon tax:

Justanotherlurker Tue 22-Aug-17 18:39:11

Also it's not the government issue, it is regulation from the EU

ChardonnaysPrettySister Tue 22-Aug-17 18:40:50

There are some issues with disposal, I'm always surprised at the number of posters who flush them, but that's nothing to do with the tax, it's up to the manufacturers to put clear warnings on the packets.

Northernparent68 Tue 22-Aug-17 18:41:57

Tamping are subject to VAT, but not at the full rate, and the law that requires tamping to be subject to VAT was imposed by the EU. George Osbourne announced the tax revenue would be given to women's charities.

grandOlejukeofYork Tue 22-Aug-17 18:42:10

when jaffa cakes are classed as an essential with no vat and tampons are classed as a luxury you have to pay a tax on, something had got very fucked up somewhere.

scaevola Tue 22-Aug-17 18:47:42

VAT is a general consumption tax, so there's nothing in the rules about essentials (look at the number of countries which have it in all foodstuffs) and it is most definitely not a luxury tax.

It is a myth that razors are exempt.

The EU has stated an intention to examine removing sanpro from the scope of VAT. I suspect Brexit will happen before any meaningful progress on that. At which point the UK govt can remove it.

RebootYourEngine Tue 22-Aug-17 18:47:44

Id like to know what essential things for males only have a tax on them. At a guess i would nothing.m

LilQueenie Tue 22-Aug-17 18:54:40

I agree lets make sanitary products that cost under under a pound free because it seems people cannot afford them. 99% of people that claim this are taking the piss. Most other things you buy at the shop are taxed so why should this be any different. Choosing reusables is better for the environment and also for women due to the lack of chemical. Yes there are chemicals in sanitary products. It also works out cheaper in the long run.The real problem is those that complain about paying the tax why dont you go for the long term cheaper alternative?

SlothMama Tue 22-Aug-17 18:56:06

I think I'm an minority who doesn't really care about the tax? I just stock up when they are on offer! It's unfair but I'm hardly going to boycott buying them....

solarisIsAClassic Tue 22-Aug-17 18:59:52


What essential male products exist? BTW, an inability to name any doesn't mean 'patriarchy'.

ForalltheSaints Tue 22-Aug-17 19:07:56

I never thought this would be a debate on a forum aimed at women. Though ironically the reason they are still taxed is because the regulation by the EU that once VAT is applied it cannot be removed was supported by our first woman Prime Minister.

As a man, whilst I regard certain things as essential for me, I can choose not to have them. I don't want a beard but I have a choice not to have one and not to look like a sad fashion victim.

notanotherNC Tue 22-Aug-17 19:10:47

Tampons are non essential though. Anything disposable should have a tax on it. Women can use menstrual cups or reusable pads.

Waffles80 Tue 22-Aug-17 19:13:09

Which are also taxed.

Nuttynoo Tue 22-Aug-17 19:16:14

In the old days women were expected to use dirty rags and sanitary towels were considered a luxury hence the tax. That's not the case any more and hasn't been for some time, but the sanitary towel industry is a lucrative one and so the government doesn't change it. I personally think they should apply a male only tax to counter it so things get balanced out.

QuackPorridgeBacon Tue 22-Aug-17 19:18:46

Ok I admit I am silly to think someone sorts through them.. blush

They are a luxury though right? (Tampons anyway) is it all sanitary products for periods that are taxed?

I think saying men have nothing necessary taxed is a bit silly and childish. Men don't tend to need extra things to do with their body (yes I'm sometimes jealous they don't have to shave or bleed lol) so it's unfair to say men are sexist.

I don't mind the tax, it doesn't bother me and it doesn't cost much extra. The pound shop sell pads so if I'm a bit skint and she shows up I just buy pound shop ones and crack on.

The only reason I posted was because I'm getting tired of the constant emails about it from petition sites (I will be unsubscribing).

BrandNewHouse Tue 22-Aug-17 19:20:21

If tampons and sanitary products are classed as a luxury item, then it means the government thinks they shouldn't be something bought by those depending on welfare type payments.
And it really begs the question as to whether women and girls are expected to use rags (and pay for laundering them).
There is something truly misogynistic about it, the implications as to how women are perceived is absolutely vile.

Nuttynoo Tue 22-Aug-17 19:20:24

Sanitary towels are taxed. That's why people call it a female tax - every product to manage menstruation is taxed.

Silverthorn Tue 22-Aug-17 19:20:57

Shouldnt we all be thinking about using washable pads and mooncup type products instead. Perhaps these should be tax free.

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