Jan 26th
2016

The Disposal of Periodic Unsanitary Politics

Written by  Justin Thomas - Media Consultant
The Disposal of Periodic Unsanitary Politics

Tampons! Sanitary Pads! Periods! As most of you know, there is a proposal to tax our female sanitary products so they fall in line with the European Union rules that see them taxed at 5% VAT. Apparently our feminine hygiene products are a luxury item and they're taxed accordingly. As you reach towards the sanitary waste disposal unit, kindly placed there by your friendly washroom services supplier, I'm sure you catch yourself thinking "I'm so glad I treated myself this month to some of those luxurious female sanitary products.

Wow, we feel so special and we’re so glad we indulged like that!”. I mean, really! Luxury items! Are they sure? When items such as Jaffa cakes, cake decorations and helicopters are currently classed as essential (ok I’ll give them the Jaffa cakes), how can anyone justify calling our feminine sanitary products a luxury?

Female sanitary products are not the only ridiculous item that has attracted tax over the years, apparently the thing that used to attract tax in Russia centuries ago was beards. Let’s just hope that the feminine hygiene tax issue doesn’t start going down this route and start taxing those of us who might have a bit of an unruly lady garden. It would be, after all, almost as unbelievable as tax on tampons and sanitary pads and that is a reality.

Personally about the most luxurious I feel when I’m going about my monthly routine is when I start my hand washing process and I reach for the soap dispenser to discover that they’ve put the nice stuff in there for us, not when I’m using a sanitary pad or tampon. Soap is classed as an essential item and so, not taxed. So why are my feminine hygiene products taxed and called luxurious and not my hand hygiene ones? Surely they’re all part of the same hygiene process?

How could the whole feminine hygiene process even become remotely luxurious to move it towards the label that it’s been given? What could be done to change it? Tampons and sanitary pads could come with little hand sanitising wipes so that when you are faced with a situation when not only isn’t there any luxurious soap in the dispenser, there’s none, you can still have great hand hygiene after disposing of your sanitary waste. This change could happen now through the washroom vending solutions that charge extra for convenience. To receive a small bonus for our usage of premium priced vending options would soften a blow in a, what is obviously not perfect, moment.

An innovation in sanitary bin design came about in the last decade and it was a breath of fresh air. We applaud the waste disposal industry for their innovative hand waving to open design tweak to sanitary bins or at the very least the introduction of foot pedals. This, no touch, design element should be introduced to all public bathroom entrances. Once we’re done with the whole handwashing process and have squeaky clean, germ free hands, the last thing we want to then do is reach for what is probably one of the most germ ridden places in the whole washroom, the door handle to get out. Replace the manual doors with automatic doors or no door at all. We want to be able to walk out of there without getting a whole new eco system of germs starting up a little community on our hands which we then inadvertently spread around our environment. While a few do have this, most don’t. It’s really luxurious, it’s just hygienic.

So, who can change the law? The government have the power to change the tax on tampons and sanitary pads but do you really think that it’s on their radar? They pay us lip service but I’m fairly sure that as we’re talking they would be suffering from that age old affliction that has plagued politicians for all time, optional deafness. However, you can bet if everybody had to use female sanitary products each month then things would be different.

When I write a piece like this I like to have a little bit for both sides to make it unbiased, however, in this instance I can find nothing positive to say about taxing female sanitary products. Its madness and it needs to stop now, period!! Washrooms services businesses, like ours, do what we can to make the feminine hygiene process as seamless as possible however this particular issue has to be dealt with effectively and show our need for a degree of independence from EU legislation.

Justin Thomas - Media Consultant

Justin Thomas has been involved with Zenith Washroom Solutions (formerly ABC hygiene) since 2009 at first providing ABC hygiene's 2nd website solution and now guiding Zenith Washroom Solutions' online assets into a more modern, user-friendly, version exploiting the best of the latest technologies whilst focusing on user experience improvements from the core. During the past 6 years Justin has learnt a huge amount about the hygiene industry and is now working as a contracted media consultant providing a full range of online marketing solutions to enable Zenith Washroom Solutions focus clearly on providing a leading hygiene services solution for their customers. You'll hear more from Justin through our constantly growing online media channels. Justin works for a number of small technical businesses based in the UK providing continual online media representation. Justin lives with his wife and daughter enjoying a wide range of activities including motorcycle maintenance, cooking, music and being a tech geek.

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