There’s been quite a bit of news recently so you may have missed something great: In the midterm elections, Nevada voters officially decided to get rid of the tampon tax.

This means that menstrual products will no longer be taxed as a “luxury item.” Starting January 1, 2019, all tampons, pads, menstrual cups, and other feminine hygiene products will no longer have a 6.85% tax attached to it.

Nevada State Senator Yvanna Cancela told Marketplace,

“Feminine hygiene products are primarily bought for women and the sales tax on what are medically necessary devices disproportionately affects women. And I think removing a tax like that from our tax code is important in moving towards equality.”

This makes Nevada the 10th state to ditch the tampon tax. Other states that have already gotten rid of the tax include Minnesota, Illinois, Pennsylvania, New York, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Florida.

For those of you who don’t quite understand what the big fuss is about, let me explain.

There are two big reasons why the tampon tax is a big deal. The first issue is that by classifying menstrual products as “luxury” items, states are unfairly penalizing cis women and trans men for something they have absolutely no control over. As most menstruating humans know, getting your period is not a choice, and it certainly is not a luxury. Comparatively, condoms, which are purchased by both sexes, are not taxed as a luxury item. Seems rather unfair, no?

The second problem is the practical ramifications. Tampons, pads, and menstrual cups are not cheap. For lower income people, shelling out upwards of $10/month for period products can be costly and unrealistic (yes, a box of Tampax regular tampons can cost $15.79.)

So kudos for Nevada state voters who ditched the tax. Here’s to hoping the other 40 states follow in its footsteps.

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Lena Finkel is the Editor and Founder of Femestella. Prior to starting Femestella, she worked at People, InStyle, and Tiger Beat. Her favorite Housewife is Bethenny Frankel (by far!), but when she’s not watching RHONY, you can probably find her hanging with her kitty Tom or tweeting at Sen. Chuck Schumer.

Categories: Featured Health