I'm an artist, educator and activist particularly interested in learning from tactics, props and gestures used as protests. I use this blog as a platform to archive and communicate examples of what I call 'gestures of defiance'-exciting, urgent and relevant actions that link protest histories and present radical potentials. On this blog I'm simply compiling and reposting examples I find as they happen. Months may go by with out a post but the blog as an archive is still active.
Monday, November 9, 2015
Women Protested The UK’s 'Tampon Tax' By Bleeding In White Pants
Three British women took to the streets on Friday Nov. 6 in white pants to make a statement against the EU's tax on feminine hygiene products. And they made sure to leave their tampons at home.
Charlie Edge, 22, led the protest along with two friends. The young women stood outside of the Parliament building in London to protest the government's refusal to classify the sanitary products as a essential items.
Feminine hygiene products are subject to an extra tax in the UK -- meaning that women are charged an additional fee whenever they purchase tampons and maxi pads, on top of the costs incurred by retailers and upped by profit margins.
This is because sanitary products are still considered a "luxury item" by the government, even though other toiletries like razors and incontinence pads are not subject to the same tax.
"We're getting lots of dirty looks and someone just shouted at us to get a job. But everyone keeps saying 'haha omg how quickly would we get free tampons if everyone stopped wearing them?!' So, I'm giving it a go," Edge wrote in her Facebook post.
The extra 30 pence -- nearly 50 cents -- on each box of tampons and pads may not seem like a lot, but research suggests women spend nearly $28,000 on period-related products, with around $2,000 on tampons alone.
The British government won a vote by just 305 to 287 on Monday that prevented the removal of the 5 percent "tampon tax."