Tampon tax will remain after Senate vote

In a blow for all the women out there who have to buy sanitary items like tampons and pads, the Senate has refused a request from the Greens to remove the GST from these products.

The Greens decided to mount a fight against the ‘tampon  tax’, which sees these and other feminine hygiene products taxed when some other medical necessities are not.

Even worse, the charge is labelled a ‘luxury tax’, with many women arguing getting a period each month is not a luxury.


Introduced by the Howard Government in 2000, the GST slapped a 10 per cent levy on all goods and services.  Sanitary items like Tampons and pads were classified by the then Health Minister as ‘personal hygiene products’  rather than health goods, so were not exempt.

On Monday The Australian reported that the Senate had voted down the Greens attempt to remove the GST from tampon and sanitary pad sales 33 votes to 15.

The upper house has been debating laws allowing GST to be collected on imported goods worth less than $1000, raising $300 million over three years.

Greens senator Larissa Waters had previously said that that revenue would more than cover the shortfall if the GST is removed from pads and tampons.


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what do I think? I think this is a very twisted attemot to sledge the ALP rather than seriously deal with a problem. How do I know this? Because, unfortunately for you, the actual truth is out there: ‘Senator GALLAGHER (Australian Capital Territory—Manager of Opposition Business in the Senate) (11:57): Labor certainly agrees that we need a way to fix the current arrangements around the GST and sanitary products, and we have certainly been clear about this in the past, but we do not believe an amendment to this bill is the way to fix it. We think in all… Read more »