SJB: ‘Remove Duty For Menstrual Products’

March 18, 2021 | 13 Comments

Social Justice Bermuda [SJB] commended Tylasha DeSilva for launching We BLead Bermuda, and called on the Government “to take a small step towards addressing this issue” by changing the custom duty rates for menstrual products to 0%.

A spokesperson said, “Social Justice Bermuda [SJB] commends Ms. Tylasha DeSilva for launching We BLead Bermuda to fight period poverty, break down the stigma attached to periods and provide menstruation products to people in need.

“We encourage the community to support this project, and look forward to this project developing over time as it is sure to effect change towards a more socially just society.

“In this same vein, our 2020 Platform called on the Government to ‘revamp the customs duty system to be more equitable, including reviewing the rates on essential motherhood and menstruation products.’

“In light of the issue of period poverty and the Government’s platform promise to ‘reduce selected customs duties… to relieve pressure on working and middle class families,’ we call on the Government to take a small step towards addressing this issue by changing the custom duty rates for all goods under the tariff heading 96.19, which covers ‘sanitary towels [pads] and tampons, napkins and napkin liners for babies and similar articles of any materials,’ to 0%.

“Currently, duties rates under this heading range from 0% [for adult incontinence products] to 6.5% [for baby articles] to a prohibitive 25% for all other products, including menstrual products.

“Reducing the entire tariff head to 0% would extend the need already identified by the government of duty relief for adult incontinence products to key products required by women and families as a whole.

“SJB believes that the resulting minor loss in Government revenue, will be more than offset by the benefits to women and families, especially those that are working and middle-class, consistent with the Government’s platform promise.

“In further support of women and families, we also look forward to the Government acting on its election promises to:

  • “Improve childcare support by implementing a savings system to allow persons with children to retain 50% of child support received to cover child-related expenses. Currently, financial assistance awards are reduced to account for any child support received.
  • “Implement Workforce Equity Legislation, inclusive of salary transparency.
  • “Implement a compulsory online “unconscious bias” training programme for all jurors.
  • “Introduce sexual exploitation laws including revenge porn protection laws.
  • “Implement annual training on sexual violence and unconscious bias for all police, magistrates and judges.”

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Comments (13)

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  1. Morning Sky says:

    How is it more equitable to give breaks in duty for one of the genders and not both? Should male-use products be given breaks also? Definition of Equity is:

    1a: justice according to natural law or right
    specifically : freedom from bias or favoritism
    b: something that is equitable
    2a: the money value of a property or of an interest in a property in excess of claims or liens against it.

    I do not see how demanding something for one gender has anything to do with ‘equity’. Freedom from bias?

    • J Starling says:

      @ Morning Sky – Out of curiousity, what are the male only products that males need due to a biological event beyond their control equivalent to the menstrual cycle? As a man I can’t think of anything I need to buy regularly that is directly tied to a biological event resulting from having a Y chromosome. Maybe some sort of hearing aid to assist with active listening, but I reckon that’s less biological and more a result of socialisation.

    • trufth says:

      Ok, I hear your concern. Can you please list some of the “male-use” products that you are referring to? I’m not disagreeing with you, just want clarification.
      Thnx.

    • NC says:

      As the previous replies have already mentioned, I’d love to hear an example of a male-use product equivalent.

      Demanding something for one gender has everything to do with equity when the demand relates to correcting something that has been an unequal burden for generations.

  2. LOL (original) says:

    What Ladies get everything at a discount or free, Free drinks at the bar, discounted tickets to the dance, parties. Get away with physical and mental abuse. Na why do they deserve a break. Justice is justice and equality is equality. Did they have mandatory conscription, do they get the same time of fines for civil or criminal fines, no they don’t. How many have to work in the “trenches” or take on dangerous health risking jobs. While they can work at home most times the majority of men can’t. Misogynist they need a derogatory word for ladies who game the cucks out there and take advantage of their “privileges’” to get what they want. Gold digger isn’t harsh enough.

    LOL If you talk equality feel real equality. *& special rights for some. And you all complain about second class this and that while setting up and creating the samethings.

    • Loquat tree says:

      Wow! That’s a very unbalanced perspective and from the dark ages of the past!

      The days of free drinks at the bar or free tickets to dances are very few and far between. Have you seen the difference in mark-ups for drinks women favor over those men drink more often e.g. wine over beer?
      Try getting a women’s haircut, for even a basic one there’s little change from $100! Women’s shoes, clothes and toiletries cost much more for lesser quality, there are numerous examples.
      A woman bore you and had the lions share of all your nurturing, feeding, clothing, in addition to other family duties as well as perhaps working. Most women in Bermuda work full time, often at demanding jobs as well. Research shows the physical and mental strains far outweigh those of most men. Covid is the same, women have borne a higher load.
      There are many things that cannot be completely equal, but don’t deny a small break on only the duty on essential health items! They still have to pay for them, every month.

      • LOL (original) says:

        Please site your research on weather women’s issues out weight men’s. I’m sure I could find just as many showing otherwise. However you might have it as men don’t report as much as their is very little support for men out there. Studies do show however that successful suicides are more common among men. So maybe less to have any long term studies You have your issues men have ours.

        LOL I get what your implying that I should respect women and I do but respect should be a two way street. Often it is not especially with the feminist types who conveniently overlook what men have to put up with as well which causes undue mental stress. I mean come on the term “war of the sexes was coined by whom? Think there is enough evidence world wide to not have to go into more detail but ask any male rights activist. Or find out how females with power (if that is a criteria for you) ie Senators view men’s rights Jessie Phillips in the UK comes to mind. Oh and by the way as a father with a sick wife I know exactly how hard it is to hold a full time job, taking care of 2 children and an infant that required feeding every half an hour as they where born premature. While working for myself on weekends and completing homework. Think what you want.

    • sandgrownan says:

      Ah, now then, didn’t your mummy hug you enough?

      • LOL (original) says:

        Better to be silent then show how foolish you are..

        LOL

        • sandgrownan says:

          I bet you’re fun at parties.

          • LOL (original) says:

            I get the impression from you the parties I enjoy would be on a lower class in “your” opinion. In saying that being fun at a party and think you are are two different thinks.

            Lol

  3. scoob says:

    Men already have a 100% discount on these products, as they don’t need to buy them.

    I would argue that not only should essentials such as these be free from duty, but they should actually be subsidized.

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