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MEC pulls products from website following complaints of 'pink tax'

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DH Vancouver Staff Jun 12, 2019 11:21 am

Mountain Equipment Co-op (MEC) has temporarily removed a neckwarmer from its online store after complaints that it was priced differently for men and women.

The price difference was brought up on Reddit, as one user noticed that the men’s Castelli Head Thingy was priced at $30, while the women’s was $35.

“I posted a question about it on the products and I did get a private response from MEC, saying they won’t change the price since it is set by their supplier,” wrote Reddit user Shrewy.

“Well, I think retailers should take responsibility in not passing the ‘pink tax’ along to their female customers, even if their suppliers are the original source.”

The men’s version (l) and women’s version (r) of the Castelli Head Thingy/ (MEC)

The “pink tax” refers to gender-based pricing where women are charged more than men for the same item.

MEC removed the items from its website. In a statement, MEC said that the items are expected to be back online with adjusted pricing as soon as possible.

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“We appreciate our members bringing this price difference to our attention. When a vendor of ours has a Minimum Advertised Price (MAP) policy, we must comply,” said MEC.

“We have reviewed the products in this case and haven’t found any significant differences in product features. We are connecting with our vendor partner now and expect both items to be back online tomorrow with identical pricing.”

At the time of publication, the items were still listed as unavailable on MEC’s website.

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