The NSW Labor Opposition today called on Premier Berejiklian to put pressure on her state and federal counterparts to follow Labor’s policy to scrap GST on tampons and other feminine hygiene products.
Shadow Treasurer Ryan Park said scrapping GST on the products would have a minimal impact on the bottom line, while acting Shadow Minister for Women Jenny Aitchison said such a move would make a big difference to women.
They were making the comments following the announcement by Federal Shadow Treasurer Chris Bowen that a future Labor Government will remove GST from the products.
It is estimated that women spend in the order of $10,000 on such products during their lifetime, or over $200 a year on their periods. Labor says women should not be taxed on these essential items that enable them to live, work and participate fully in our community.
NSW is one of the only states or territories that does not support the removal of what is known as the ‘Tampon Tax’.
Women from across the spectrum of the community have been critical of the tax since it was implemented in 2000 by the Howard Federal Government with the implementation of the GST.
Quotes attributable to Shadow Treasurer Ryan Park MP
“A Shorten Labor government will do the right thing by women and the economy generally. NSW Labor wholeheartedly supports today’s announcement and calls on Premier Berejiklian to press her state and federal colleagues to adopt the policy.
“This will provide a real boost to women’s hip pockets while having a minimal impact on the budget in the short to medium term.
“The money saved by women at the checkout will in all likelihood go back into the economy. This makes sense on so many levels.”
Quotes attributable to Acting Shadow Women’s Minister Jenny Aitchison MP
“Having a period is not a luxury. Removal of the GST recognises that women’s bodies are normal and they should not be charged a tax to deal with their periods."
“One of the biggest issues for girls and women in developing countries is dealing with the practicalities and negative cultural beliefs around menstruation. It’s great to see Federal Labor
everywhere that periods are normal, and we shouldn’t tax them for something that for many is already a big enough inconvenience in their lives.”
"Figures released earlier this week confirm the gender pay gap still exists in a majority of industries. Governments of all persuasions must act on this but at the same time; they should work to remove inequitable taxes that also cut into women’s wages.”