SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) - Within the next 30 days, Shreveporters will no longer need to pay city sales tax on feminine products and diapers.
Shreveport City Council unanimously voted Tuesday, Feb. 10 to eliminate the “pink tax.”
“Even though it just seems like minimal pennies to us right now, that really does add up for families that could be struggling,” District B Councilwoman LeVette Fuller said.
The accessibility of diapers and feminine products “is a matter of dignity and equity and further is a natural biological process that affects humans during their lifetime,” according to the ordinance.
“In a way, we were being taxed because we were born to have a period,” Debbie Hollis said. She helps run Basic Necessities, a nonprofit that delivers non-food essentials to people in the ArkLaTex, namely menstrual products and diapers.
“This is what we’ve been doing since June of last year,” Hollis explained. “We’ve distributed over 16,500 diapers and over 5,000 period products.”
During the 2020 regular session, the state Legislature passed similar legislation; however, it allowed “political subdivisions” to choose whether to participate and it expires at the end of the year.
“They’re testing this out to see what it does to our overall revenue,” Fuller said. “I hope they see the benefit to families. It might be that you could buy one or two more things.”
Therefore, she said she wanted to propose something at the city level to make it more permanent. Other cities, like Baton Rouge and New Orleans, have passed ordinances to abolish the tax.
“Every penny you’re not spending on taxes frees up that penny to be spent on something else,” Fuller said. “For Shreveport, this could mean a family commuting and buying their groceries inside the city, instead of buying those groceries outside in the parish or in Bossier.”