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a bloody disgrace

sanitary products, like tampons and pads, are taxed by 5% because they are considered a non-essential item. not only is this completely sexist and unreasonable, it gets much worse when you look at some items which are considered 'essential' and therefore exempt from tax. these include jaffa cakes, edible sugar flowers, alcoholic jellies and exotic meats such as kangeroo. sorry.. are jaffa cakes essential to your health? do you really need them to function normally? no, i didn't think so. (well if you do you may have an issue, go get it checked out).

the issue of tampon tax has recently come to light after laura coryton arranged a petition to end the tax. back in 2000, tampons were actually taxed by 17.5% until a labour mp, dawn primarolo raised the issue and its unfairness. george osbourne claimed that £15 million raised through the tampon tax were to be spent on women's charities such as the eve appeal and women's aid. i researched these charities and the work they do is very vital for vulnerable women. surely these should be funded anyway due to their important work? why should it be down to women to fund charities to look after women? domestic violence is not just an issue for women, it should be tackled by society as a whole and prioritised as a major issue for the government to deal with. does this mean that without the tampon tax george osbourne would have no means or intention to fund charities to protect women? nice one, george. i'm glad you've really thought about this and have the safety of britain's women at heart...

sanitary products are absolutely necessary. a society cannot freak out and be disgusted at the concept of free bleeding as recently demonstrated by kiran gandhi who ran a marathon without using sanitary products. the internet went crazy, calling her all sort of horrendous terms. now i personally wouldn't want to 'free bleed' because i would find it uncomfortable but why are periods such a taboo topic? why do we have to hide the tampons that we carry out in our bags and why do men at counters of supermarkets get flustered at our jumbo pack of overpriced sanitary towels we have to buy every month? the average british woman spends around £18,000 on periods in her entire lifetime. the money is split between sanitary products and pain relief, which is also necessary because your entire utersus is contracting WHICH BLOODY PAINFUL ( ha ha ha, laughing at my own pun). women have it hard enough experiencing an average of 450 periods in her lifetime where she will physically ill, spend an enormous sum of money but wait, we're being told that's a luxury? funny enough, i'm not exactly 'grateful' for recieving my period every month.

if the government can fund the nhs, schools and universities to hand out free condoms, then surely they can do the same with essential sanitary products. you can choose to have sex, or not to have sex, but you can't avoid periods. if you could, i doubt there would be any woman who would happily volunteer for one. without sanitary products, it is extremely difficult for a woman to pursue and enjoy a fully-functioning and flexible social or private life. if you are a man, it's probably very difficult for you to wrap your head around this entire concept.

to me, the tampon tax is just a blatent example of the taboo over normal female bodily functions and how instutionalized sexism is everywhere. stop shaming women for what their bodies do naturally and stop taxing them for essential items! remove the tax NOW or accept the fact that free-bleeding is actually now a thing.

tampon tax. it's a bloody disgrace.

This post first appeared on Sophie's Thoughts, please read the originial post: here

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a bloody disgrace


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