COLUMBUS (WCMH) – A group of women from the Cleveland area are suing the Ohio Department of Taxation. They’re fighting to eliminate the tax on tampons and pads.
The lawsuit states that this kind of tax is discriminatory.
State Rep. Kristin Boggs agrees. “These are not luxury items and should not be taxed,” she says. “This is another tax that they have to pay that there’s no similar association for men that have to pay it.”
“I don’t believe we should be taxed on something that’s a necessity,” says Columbus resident Carly Czuba.
“To be taxed for it, it’s kind of unfair,” says Kelsey Kilnartin.
Czuba and Kilnartin are not apart of the class action complaint, but they agree taxing tampons and pads is wrong.
“It’s a medical need, it’s something we need just for daily lives,” says Czuba.
Boggs says feminine hygiene products are not only needed for a woman’s livelihood, but also so they can participate in society, like going to school or work. “I think there is a lack of understanding that they are medically necessary products and I think that as such they should not be taxed,” she says.
The lawsuit states that the Ohio Department of Taxation collects approximately $11 million a year just from menstruating women.
According to Boggs, if the court finds that this tax violates the Equal Protection Clause of the Constitution, then she agrees women should be reimbursed.
“Women need these products. They need them every month,” says Boggs.
Many medical items in Ohio are not taxed.
The lawsuit also states that women spend on average about $70/year on tampons and pads. That equals about $4 dollars in taxes annually, depending on local taxes.
Similar legislation was introduced last summer to ban the tax.
The Ohio Department of Taxation declined to give a comment.