Taxation on feminine products sparks body positivity movement


Andrew Avilla/The Skyline View

Kuang Yang (left) and Michelle Chee (right) from ASSC take petitions to stop tax on feminine hygiene products in the Fireside Dining Room on Wednesday, March 16, 2016.

In lieu of Women’s History Month, Associated Students of Skyline College (ASSC) organized a body positivity event in the dining room on Wednesday, March 16. The event promoted support for the petition proposed by Jennifer Weiss-Wolf and Cosmopolitan Magazine entitled “No Tax On Tampons: Stop Taxing Our Periods! Period.”

For years, tampons and pads have been considered luxury products, thus requiring added tax. This petition works to end taxation on such products in the state of California. Tying into the theme of taxing periods, the club promoted body positivity in efforts to urge women to be proud of their bodies and natural functions.

During the event, students were able to get involved and help eliminate these taxes by signing the petition. In exchange, those who petitioned were offered care packages that included chocolate, tea and tampons, buttons with feminist statements such as “100 percent boy tears” and “pizza rolls not gender roles,” and postcards with the slogan, “uteruses before duderuses.”

“It’s kind of a health issue,” Mechanical Engineering major David Del Castillo Schmidhuber said. “What if you have someone that can’t afford [feminine products]? Then they’re more susceptible to infections.”

Del Castillo Schmidhuber was one of the many Skyline students who signed the petition to end the tax on pads and tampons.

“In my opinion, certain things should be free,” Del Castillo Schmidhuber said. “For example, pads should be free, kind of like giving out condoms.”

While some students saw the taxation as a health issue, others saw it as an attack on women’s bodies.

“They’re considered a luxury item,” Emily Colby, former president of the Model UN Club said. “We both know that they are not a luxury.”

Periods happen and it was important for the ASSC to emphasize that women are essentially being taxed for being women. ASSC urged people to be body positive, informing women and its petitioners that working to end the taxation helps the world work to move away from gender injustice.