OLYMPIA, Wash. — What started as a frustration is now a piece of legislation.
Retailers would not be able to sell products or services for different prices based on someone’s gender if the product is “substantially similar,” under a proposed bill in Olympia.
Students from Lake Washington High School’s AP government class submitted the idea to state Senator Manka Dhingra, D-Redmond.
Dhingra is the bill’s prime sponsor. The legislation gets its first public hearing Monday.
“Equity is very important,” said Abi Jalso, Lake Washington High School senior.
She and classmates visited a Kirkland grocery store and documented several items, from vitamins to adult diapers, where the female versions were more expensive than those marketed at men.
Rather than complain, the students decided to do something about it.
“Our group was mostly girls so we thought this made a lot of sense to advocate for and we’re really passionate about it,” said Lake Washington senior Bree Heuer.
Huer and Jalso are not old enough to vote but hope to testify in favor of the legislation as it progresses through the state House and Senate.
”It doesn’t really matter how old you are. If you are passionate about an issue, you can make an impact,” said Heuer, “We’re here at the state level, which is kind of crazy, because we just came from our high school AP government class.”