Imagine it’s your second ‘red’ day and you’re contemplating whether going to work is really worth it. You lie in bed, take meds for the cramps, and you start composing a heads-up message to your workmates. What if you don’t need to worry about this anymore?
Spain is set to become the first Western country to offer several days of ‘menstrual leave’ every month for women suffering period pain while at work.
According to the Spanish Gynaecology and Obstetrics Society, around a third of women who menstruate suffer from severe pain known as dysmenorrhea.
“It is important to clarify what a painful period is, we are not talking about a slight discomfort, but about serious symptoms such as diarrhea, severe headaches, fever,” Spain’s Secretary of State for Equality and against Gender Violence, Ángela Rodríguez said in an interview with El Periodico newspaper.
“Symptoms that when there is a disease that entails them, a temporary disability is granted, therefore the same should happen with menstruation and that there is the possibility that if a woman has a very painful period, she can stay home,” she added.
Spain will join Japan, South Korea, Indonesia, and Zambia as countries that grant menstrual leave after the law has been enacted.
As the reports stated, the government announced that it would approve the new measures and discuss the details at the next cabinet meeting this coming Tuesday.
Aside from the leave, the broader draft bill will include new measures that would guarantee menstrual health and recovery of reproductive health, including medical leave for women recovering from an abortion.
According to Rodriguez, the reform package will also lower VAT on sanitary pads and tampons, effectively lowering their price, and make these products available “free of charge in educational and social centers.” This will make period products more accessible to all.
The health bill would remove parental consent for 16 and 17-year-olds seeking an abortion, and guarantee the right to seek an abortion for free in the country’s public healthcare system as well.
Source: www.elperiodico.com/es/sociedad/20220303/baja-permiso-laboral-regla-menstruacion-13316714, www.euronews.com/next/2022/05/12/spain-set-to-become-the-first-european-country-to-introduce-a-3-day-menstrual-leave-for-wo