A Perth university student's pun-ridden online petition against tax on tampons has attracted almost 40,000 supporters.While the petition and it's puns are no doubt funny, the student does make a good point:
Sophie Liley from the Women's Department of the University of Western Australia's student guild created the petition earlier this month.
Other essential items and services, such as basic food, water, education, child care and health are exempt from GST, but tampons and sanitary pads attract the 10 per cent charge as part of the goods and services tax, introduced in 2000.
The petition claims there's "no womb in society for a tampon tax," that the tax was "cramping my style" and the tax is described as a "bloody outrage," "a stain on our national image" and a "bleeding disgrace."
While Ms Liley has taken a humorous approach to the matter, a letter addressed to Prime Minister Julia Gillard, Opposition Leader Tony Abbott and other politicians makes some serious points.Now there is a female condom, but 5 will get you 10, it's probably not used to the extent that regular male condoms are. And how many people actually think the tax free condoms are female condoms versus those used by males? Having said that, if you can classify condoms as "essential health products", how can you not say the same for tampons?
"Charging women as a direct result of their basic biology is hugely and fundamentally sexist - especially given that condoms are classified as GST-free essential health products while sanitary items are not," the letter stated.
Condoms are used for sex (or sometimes as balloons), which is optional. Tampons are used for periods, which are not optional. You won't tax guys for having sex safely, but you will tax women for having biological functions. I think the point has been made. Period, end of argument.