Watch the video and use the subtitles and the transcript to help you understand.
Happy International Women’s Day! It’s Sophia again and, of course, this video is for the British Council’s LearnEnglish Teens website and their YouTube channel. As it is International Women’s Day, I thought as well as celebrating all the amazing women in our lives, it would be really great to raise some awareness about women’s equality, so I’m going to be speaking to you guys today about ‘pink tax’, otherwise known as gender tax.
What is gender tax? Gender tax is basically the idea that women have to pay more for certain products because they're marketed at women and not men.
Now you might be thinking, ‘How is this possible?’ Surely if women across the globe realised that they were being charged more than men, they would be angry and they wouldn’t buy the products and they would realise how unfair this is? Unfortunately, no! Gender tax has sneaked into many everyday products that women and men aren’t even aware of! We might be familiar with the classic examples of women’s deodorants or razors costing more than men’s, but have you ever thought about something as simple as a plain T-shirt or a yoghurt?
A report by the New York City Department of Consumer Affairs found on average that products geared towards women cost more than similar products geared towards men 42 per cent of the time. But it doesn’t just stop there. Even children are affected by the gender tax. In the same report, they found that these two similar scooters from the same company – one was targeted at girls and one was targeted at boys – and the one that was targeted at girls cost £16 more than that one targeted at boys. So even girls and boys, men and women, people of all ages are affected by the pink tax or the gender tax.
So, what can we take from all of this? Well, I think that the very first important step is to be aware of gender tax; to be aware of the products we’re buying and to question whether this product is more expensive because it’s for a woman or less expensive because it’s for a man. You can help to raise awareness by sharing this video with all your family and friends. Leave me a comment below and let me know if you’ve realised any products in your local supermarket that might be influenced by gender tax, and, of course, let me know how you’re celebrating International Women’s Day. I hope you’re having a lovely day and, once again, happy International Women’s Day. I’ll see you in my next one! Byeeeeee!
Worksheets and downloads
What do you think about gender tax? Can you think of any more examples of products that cost more if they're aimed at women?