ARKANSAS (KNWA/KFTA) — An Arkansas community group proposed a new ballot initiative that would get rid of the state’s tampon tax, a sales tax for menstrual products.
Katie Clark, founder of Arkansas Period Poverty Project, says removing the sales and use tax on feminine hygiene products such as tampons, menstrual cups, and sanitary napkins will benefit families.
“It would be a huge relief on Arkansas families to remove that tax,” Clark said.
Clark says she wants to increase access to these products and that one in four girls in the state miss school because they don’t have access to pads or tampons.
Arkansans spend $3 million dollars on tampon tax every year, according to Clark.
April Roy, founder and CEO of femPAQ questions if certain period products are healthy for the human body.
But some organic options are even more costly.
“You have to weigh those outcomes because you don’t want to use products that aren’t good for the body. But you do want to provide more sustainable options. But providing more sustainable options sometimes can be more expensive,” Roy said.
Roy says giving the community the option to vote on whether or not there should be tampon tax is a great idea.
“It’s not just about women. It really is about families and what they can afford. Think about someone who is on an income where they have to rationalize what bills are going to what, what food is being bought. And then now you want to tax my period products too?” she said.
Attorney General Tim Griffin will let Clark know if the proposal is approved by Sep. 21st.
If it is approved, she will have to collect about 71,000 thousand signatures to get the proposal on the ballot.
After the signatures are completed, the proposal will be on the ballot in Nov. 2024 and go into effect in Jan. 2025.