As we prepare to celebrate the many, incredible achievements of women around the world and advance the movement for gender equality this International Women’s Day, the time is right to call out the injustices we experience every day.
One woman who is campaigning for a seismic shift when it comes to addressing everyday inequality is MP Christine Jardine, who introduced her Gender-based Pricing (Prohibition) Bill in the House of Commons on March 5.
The new bill, proposed by the Liberal Democrat MP, takes aim at basic toiletries such as razors and deodorants which are sold at a significantly higher price than comparative items for men.
Ms Jardine said the bill would look to end the “outdated and sexist tax” which penalises women with differentiated pricing for purchasing products which are identical to those marketed at men, otherwise known as the ‘pink tax’.
“It is entirely unacceptable that in 2019 women and girls are still paying more than men for basic products, such as razors and deodorant,” the Edinburgh West MP said.
“Whilst women are often still being paid less too, women really are being hit by a double whammy.”
“Products marketed at women are on average considerably more expensive than those marketed at men.
“Often the only difference is the colour, yet this unfair price gap will have a significant financial impact on a woman over the course of her life.
In 2014, research from The Fawcett Society revealed that toiletries in supermarkets were between 20-25% more expensive when targeted at women, while an investigation by The Times found that women and girls were being charged 37% more on average for toys, cosmetics and clothes than men.
Some retailers have already begun to review the gender price gap in their products. After a petition accused Boots of “sexist pricing” in 2016, the company decided to lower the prices of its razors to ensure they were the same as those for men.
It’s believed that the private member’s bill will need government support to progress in the following months ahead, so it’s important that we all speak up to lend our support.