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Tampon tax: Osborne says VAT on sanitary products will fund women's charities in Autumn Statement

Tampons and sanitary towels will continue to be considered 'luxury' items

Victoria Richards
Wednesday 25 November 2015 14:41 GMT
Osborne on Tampon Tax

George Osborne has refused to slash the much-debated "tampon tax" in his Autumn Statement, saying that the £15m raised from VAT placed on sanitary products each year will be ploughed into women's charities, including domestic abuse refuges.

The Chancellor said he could not scrap the tax altogether because of "EU law" - but said he would lobby the EU to change their approach.

The announcement was met with some consternation in the House of Commons, with Labour MP Jess Phillips reportedly shouting, "You're not paying it George, I am!"

And it was also berated on social media, with Twitter users accusing Parliament of making it "women's duty" to fund support for key services such as women's mental health, domestic abuse and rape crisis centres.

Some called on government to fund women's services "properly" and pointed out that it is effectively forcing women to fund other women who are the victims of violence.

Others expressed concern for the long-term future of women's refuges and charities should the tampon tax ever be abolished.

And many argued that domestic violence and violence against women is a global problem - and one that society as a whole should tackle, rather than exclusively women.

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