Lauren Rae | Contributing Writer | Monday, 16 May 2016

Supermarkets Pledge To Pass On Tampon Tax Savings To Shoppers

Supermarkets Pledge To Pass On Tampon Tax Savings To Shoppers

The Debrief: Morison’s, ASDA and Sainsbury’s are just a few to be named pledging to save women heaps of money (well 5%) on feminine products

Morison’s, ASDA and Sainsbury’s are just a few big supermarkets who are pledging to save women heaps of money on following on from the abolition of the controversial tampon-tax.

After a successful campaign over the last year, which started with a Change.org petition, which gained over 300,000 signatures, the Prime Minister finally brought the issue up with his colleagues in the European Union’s HQ and a deal was made after Labour MP Paula Sheriff, took on the campaign to end the tax and raised it repeatedly in Parliament. 

Cameron himself didn’t have the power to stop taxing our periods, the 5% tax was actually set through EU tax law. So, he politely took up the issue of charging VAT on sanitary products with other leaders at an EU summit. They agreed to allow a zero VAT rating on sanitary products. 

Now that the Government have agreed to scrap the tax and the EU have given them the okay, supermarkets have agreed to lower the prices of sanitary products altogether instead of keeping the prices the same and pocketing the difference once the 5% levy is no longer applied.

Sherriff told The Debrief, “I’m delighted to have reached this agreement with Britain’s largest retailers that they will guarantee to pass on the tampon tax cut at the point of sale. It would be completely unacceptable if this measure just led to big businesses boosting their bottom line at the expense of women buying what are essential goods.”

She feels that with retailers coming on board to back the ban on the ‘period tax', there will be more responsibility to the government to set a final deadline on the tax being abolished for good. As things stand a date hasn’t actually been set for when this change will come into effect. 

In the future Sherriff hopes to tackle the women’s charities ensuring that women who approach food banks are still provided with sanitary care and remain unaffected by the changes, 'We must also protect the women’s charities who are receiving help from the existing tampon tax fund created after we first raised this issue. The Chancellor needs to ensure that they have the support they need to continue their work, and businesses should also do their bit.' She continues, 'For example, we are in the terrible situation that some women are forced to approach food banks for tampons, and we need to ensure that everyone has access to basic sanitary protection. I hope we have more to announce on that shortly.'

Tesco, Sainsbury’s, ASDA, Morrisions, Waitrose and Boots have all been named to provide Sherriff with a formal written pledge detailing their price cuts. The supermarkets involved are making basic sanitary items more accessible to women, though it’s undetermined when George Osborne will bring this into force.

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Tags: Politics