- Publish Date
- Tuesday, 21 February 2017, 9:38AM
The government funding agency has recently received an application to fund, or at least subsidise sanitary products including pads and tampons as medical products. The process of menstruating is experienced by nearly every woman and is mostly unavoidable, so why do we carry the burden of paying the hefty price of our vaginas?
Let's face it, women are pretty bad-ass. Every month for an average five days, a woman will shed the lining of her uterus causing blood to flow out the vagina. Along with this, women also suffer from menstrual cramps, headaches, backaches, mood swings, cravings, acne and so much more. Not to mention the outright 'period shame' that women face on a regular basis.
Yet, like goddamn warriors, these glorious human beings wake up, take a Panadol, put in a tampon and get on with their lives. But unfortunately, it's not that easy for everyone, with sanitary products costing around $6 or $7, they aren't exactly an affordable option for all. Women and girls who can't afford these products are forced to stay home from work or school, or even use rags.
Considering the fact that condoms are given away for free on the regs, its hard to believe that pads and tampons are considered less of a necessity. Here's a quick example, while a condom may sit folded up in a 16 year old's wallet for years waiting on that one special day that the owner might engage in sexual activity, pads and tampons WILL be used.
This is not to say that free or subsidised contraception isn't important, New Zealanders are incredibly lucky to have access to safe sex products and contraception, but sex is a choice, while periods, are not.
Sanitary products are currently taxed as luxury items, LUXURY, which is the last word any woman, or man for that matter, would use to describe vaginal bleeding. With half the population experiencing menstruation, it seems a no brainier to make these items more affordable.
Tax payers already contribute to medical products that they themselves don't need, and they also benefit from this system too.