Menstruating women – Stay at home

Menstruating women – Stay at home

There is a big debate for allowing women at workplace to take off while menstruating.  Some countries have a formal menstrual leave policy.

The concept started in Japan in 1920’s and countries like Indonesia, South Korea, Taiwan created legislation giving women the right, to two or three days of menstrual leave. The latest to jump on the bandwagon is Italy, becoming the first European country with Paid period Leave.

But not without implementation complexities. The Italian legislation states – Female workers must present a medical certificate stating that they are suffering from dysmenorrhea, and that certificate must be renewed each year.

Even in the Asian countries, this leave has not been without difficulties. Period Dates vary. Many a times it’s a not a clockwork 28 day cycle. Managers have been known to raise objection if a woman applies for Period leave, on very different dates in two consecutive months. Women have often been accused of falsely  claiming leave on days of heavy workload at office.

Staying at home creates a huge debate surrounding gender equality. It creates a whole host of issues for women at the workplace.

It suggests women are uniquely handicapped in the workplace by the fact that they have periods.

~Emily Martin, Vice President for workplace justice, National Women’s Law Center, USA.

Eden King, an associate professor of psychology at Texas’ Rice University who focuses on workplace discrimination, says that “for-women policies” can backfire.[i]  Treat it like any other illness, she suggests, laying less emphasis on gender.

There is unanimous agreement on one aspect. Period Pain cripples life and work for 2 – 3 days every month.

Period Pain cripples careers.[ii]

[i] Claire Lampen , 2017. Moves to give women time off for periods have met mixed responses – so how can employers create policies that support female workers?

[ii] Mail Online, Daily Mail, The Mail on Sunday & Metro Media Group. Period pain ‘cripples women’s careers’: Young women’s careers could be damaged because they are regularly bedridden with period pains.

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