by Alison Weir, Chief of Policy, Research and Analysis, National Diaper Bank Network
More and more state legislatures are becoming aware of diaper need and the inherent injustice of charging sales tax for basic needs like diapers and tampons. Louisiana, Michigan, and Nevada join the list of states looking at exempting diapers from sales tax. In Louisiana, the sales tax exemption bill is joined by a proposal to change the state constitution to prohibit tax on diapers and feminine hygiene products. In Nevada, because sales tax provisions are already written into the state constitution, the proposal to exempt diapers and feminine hygiene products will have to be approved by a public referendum once it is approved by the legislature.
Nevada is also considering a bill that would require the state Department of Health and Human Services to actively look for federal grant money that could be used to provide diapers for families in need. Sounds like someone is already getting ready for the Hygiene Assistance for Families of Infants and Todders Act (U.S. HR 1143)!
For those who may have lost count, the following 18 states have a bill under consideration to eliminate or reduce sales tax on diapers: Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Iowa, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Nevada, Oklahoma, South Carolina (for diaper banks distributing diapers), Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont (diapers are currently tax free, but this would change their classification and add toilet paper as a tax free item), and Virginia (adult diapers only).
The following 6 states are considering some form of direct diaper assistance, either to families or organizations that provide diapers: California, Illinois, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, and New York.
The following 19 states have a bill under consideration to reduce or eliminate sales tax on menstrual supplies: Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland (bill clarifies that all menstrual supplies are tax exempt), Michigan, Missouri, Nevada, Ohio, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, and Washington.
The following 7 states have a bill under consideration to provide some form of direct assistance for menstrual supplies: California, Illinois, Maryland, New York, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Washington.
See all the bills with our state bill tracker.