CVS is slashing the cost of menstrual products at its pharmacies and eliminating the "pink tax" still charged in many states on tampons, pads, cups and liners.
The pharmacy chain has already begun paying the sales tax on all period products in a dozen states. Nationwide, the company has started cutting the price of certain menstrual products as of Thursday.
“CVS Health is working to reduce the costs of period care as well as the stigma associated with menstruation and period poverty,” company executives wrote in a joint statement Tuesday. “We will be paying the tax on period products in 12 states, and we are lowering the price of menstrual products in our stores.”
According to the company, prices for CVS-Health and Live Better menstrual products are being reduced by 25% across the board at all core CVS pharmacy locations. In other words, the discounts extend to CVS's store brands and do not apply to national labels.
Additionally, the sales tax on menstrual products — aka the “pink tax” — is paid for by CVS regardless of brand in the following 12 states:
- South Carolina
- West Virginia
The company’s website says that not all states allow third parties to pay sales tax on behalf of customers.
According to the advocacy group Alliance for Period Supplies, 22 states still charge sales tax on period products, 23 states have eliminated the pink tax, and the remaining five states have no sales tax at all.
“We all know plenty of people that have a period,” the organization’s website states. “But not everyone knows that one in four people struggle to purchase period supplies due to lack of income. This is called period poverty, and chances are we each know someone who has experienced this need — a neighbor, a co-worker, a friend.”
“Period products are essential,” the organization says, “and should be recognized as material basic needs rather than luxury goods.”
CVS says these steps are part of a broader initiative to tackle period poverty and end the pink tax nationwide.
“It’s time that we prioritize women’s holistic health by putting an end to menstrual stigma,” the CVS executives wrote.