Bill introduced to do away with ‘pink tax’ for military uniforms

A Senator from New Hampshire is trying to level the field when it comes to military uniform costs that women face while serving our country.

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Sen. Maggie Hassan, D-N.H., has introduced a bill along with Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, that would require the Department of Defense to have consistent criteria for items that are considered “uniquely military” across all branches of the military and for all genders, The Associated Press reported.

The move would reduce out-of-pocket costs for soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines.

The bill also requires the DOD to review plans by any service for uniform changes, the AP reported.

The Government Accountability Office found earlier this year that women military members pay more out of pocket for uniform items than men, reported.

Members of the military get a clothing allowance every year for enlisted members to replace uniform items, but officers get a one-time clothing allowance, with no annual stipend.

The GAO found that items that are not listed as “uniquely military” like handbags for the Army, Navy swimsuits and dress pumps for the Air Force and Marine Corps, fall outside of the clothing allowance.

The GAO said that a female soldier could pay $2,000 out of pocket for required, but not “uniquely military” items over five years, while a male soldier would pay $1,200, reported.

Even changes in the military uniform show a difference in price between men’s and women’s uniforms.

For example, the Army’s new green service uniform dress coat will cost an enlisted woman $163 while an enlisted man would pay $82, reported.