Women everywhere will be celebrating this news!
After years of campaigning and debate, The Chancellor of the Exchequer has officially announced in the 2020 budget that ‘tampon tax’ is FINALLY being abolished. This will come into effect on the 1st of January 2021, and sanitary products will be more affordable.
This is fantastic news – for years, menstruating women have effectively been penalised for having periods, something that is a natural biological function and not something that the majority of us would go without sanitary products for! The government has charged 5% VAT tax on sanitary products for the last 50 years.
The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak, has stated today:
“From January next year, there will be no VAT whatsoever on women’s sanitary products. I congratulate all members and right honourable members who campaigned for this.”
HM Treasury have announced the news on Twitter:
— HM Treasury (@hmtreasury) March 11, 2020
The campaign almost succeeded 2016 when the treasury pledged to end tampon tax after the ‘Stop Taxing Periods’ campaign became popular.
However, the UK government failed to change EU law, so this pledge didn’t come through, but now we’ve left the EU, the UK government are able to do this. The end of the tampon tax will save the average woman around £40 over her lifetime, which doesn’t sound like much but it’s the principle, right?
Rose Caldwell, CEO of Plan International UK, has stated:
“Today’s scrapping of the tampon tax is a landmark moment in the fight against period poverty, and it comes not a moment too soon. We hope that as it scraps the tax, the government will continue to invest in schemes that smash the stigma surrounding periods and improve period education in schools. Only in this way will we put an end to period poverty and stigma once and for all.”
Vivienne Hayes, chief executive of the Women’s Resource Centre charity has stated:
“This is a great small step in the right direction. Now let’s see the £700 million collected from women going back to where it was promised – women’s health and support charities. Given the fact that women’s health and support charities save the government approximately half a billion pounds every year, that’s a whopping £20 billion in the time that £700 million was collected in VAT. So we think it is only fair we get that debt paid back to our life saving charities.”
We think that this is a fantastic move, at long last!
Period poverty is unfortunately something that even in 2020, too many women have to deal with. We hope that now, everyone will be able to access sanitary products! What are your thoughts? Tell us in the comments.
Love from Katie & Team BBY. Xx