Bauer diaper sales tax exemption voted down by House Republicans

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INDIANAPOLIS – State Representative Maureen Bauer (D-South Bend) today introduced a proposal to eliminate sales taxes on diapers to support working families across the Hoosier State. The amendment to Senate Bill 383 was defeated by a vote of 65-28.

“A lack of access to a sufficient supply of diapers to keep our infants and toddlers clean, dry and healthy has lasting economic and health effects felt in every corner of the state,” Bauer said. 

Indiana was recently named a diaper desert, due to the difficulty of accessing this essential healthcare product. For one child, diapers have an average cost of $100 per month. Approximately 1 in 3 Hoosier families struggle to provide clean diapers for their baby. 

Bauer’s amendment would save the amount of money it costs for about a month of diapers a year, saving families $84 per child. 

The unaffordability and inaccessibility of diapers can present barriers in other aspects of parents’ lives. Many daycare centers require parents to supply their children’s diapers. If parents are unable to do so, they must stay at home with their children instead of going to work. 

“Approximately 65% of working mothers have infants,” Bauer added. “The cost of diapers is an issue that directly affects our workforce and economy.

“Indiana law already provides sales tax exemptions for many items, including lottery tickets and Kit Kats. If you don't pay sales tax to play the lottery or eat a candy bar, you shouldn't have to pay it on vital products like diapers. Lifting this economic burden would be a step forward in restoring dignity to parents and Hoosier children.”

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