MP under fire after supporting status quo in ‘tampon tax’ vote
MP DAVID Rutley has defended his decision to vote against abolishing tax on tampons and other sanitary products.
The Macclesfield MP was among Conservatives to vote against abolishing the so-called ‘tampon tax’ which means women pay 5 per cent VAT on sanitary products because they are classified as ‘nonessential luxury items’ by the EU.
In 2000 VAT on tampons fell from 17.5pc to 5pc. But women’s groups say this does not go far enough.
MPs voted 305 to 287 against the motion to scrap the tax but ministers will raise the issue with the European Commission.
MP David Rutley told the Express: “From the debate there’s clearly strong cross party support for the UK to abolish VAT on sanitary products but currently we are unable to go below 5pc VAT to a zero rating under EU law.
“I’m pleased that the financial secretary has said that he will raise the issue with the EU commission.”
Anita Bates, 45, from Bollington, said she was disappointed Mr Rutley voted against, adding: “Tampons are not luxury items, they are essential for all women, we have no choice. David Rutley had an opportunity to take a moral stand and not toe the party line.”
●● MP David Rutley