Elkins doctor advocates for tax exemption for feminine products


ELKINS, W.Va. – An Elkins-based doctor advocated for the elimination of sales tax on feminine products. Dr. Anne Banfield, an OB-GYN and director of women’s health services at the Davis Medical Center, believes that taxes on feminine products negatively affect the hygiene of lower-income households.

Specifically, Dr. Banfield believes feminine products and other necessity-based medical products, such as adult diapers, should not come with an additional tax to the sale. Many states across the country followed this custom, but West Virginia is not on this list. She felt that the people who buy these products do not do so as a luxury, but out of a need that is out of their control. So, they should not be punished for something they cannot control.

“Similarly to the fact that we don’t have a sales tax on the food that people buy in a grocery store, why are we taxing people on products that they really need?” said Banfield.

In addition to not taxing groceries, West Virginia also does not have a sales tax on medicine. Banfield believes that feminine products should follow the same guidelines.

In recent years, West Virginia lawmakers debated implementing a law that would eliminate the sales tax, but it did not pass.

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