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Osborne’s tampon tax concession receives social media backlash

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​Moves to divert VAT on women's sanitary products invokes social media backlash

Cash raised from the so-called tampon tax will go to women's charities, including domestic abuse refuges, George Osborne announced in his autumn statement.

The chancellor vowed that he was "committed" to persuading the EU to allow Britain to scrap VAT on sanitary items but still received a barage of criticism on social media.

The money is raised from an EU ruling which means VAT is placed on women’s sanitary products.

The chancellor said he could not scrap the tax altogether because of EU law", but said he would lobby the EU to change its approach.

He said the first £5million will be distributed between the Eve Appeal, SafeLives, Women’s Aid, and The Haven – and would invite bids from other good causes, including Scottish-based charities.

Despite the concession, Osborne still received the ire of social media.

The idea that a tax on exclusively female sanitary products would fund vital women's support services was for many an irony too far.

Many commentators argue that domestic violence and violence against women is a global problem and one that society as a whole should tackle, rather than exclusively women.

Others believe women are being taxed to pay for services defending them against male violence despite men earning more.

And many reacted to what they see as a "women's duty" to fund support for key services such as women's mental health, domestic abuse and rape crisis centres.

Meanwhile a petition to scrap the tax has reached more than 270,000 signatures.

The description reads: "David Cameron has accepted that removing sanitary tax will be “very difficult to do but I’ll have to go away and have a look and come back to you”. Well Mr Cameron, it’s time for a response.

"We need to know why the government still taxes sanitary products on luxurious, non-essential grounds, but not helicopters, the maintenance of our private jets, or crocodile steaks.

"If you value the functioning of those who menstruate at least as much as you enjoy your flying crocodile Fridays then sign our petition and join our campaign."



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