It’s not uncommon for women with debilitating menstrual cramps to use a sick day every now and then so they can suffer at home instead of doubled over the computer at the office. After all, how productive can you be when you’re in severe pain?
This is why South Korea, Indonesia,
While supporters say the bill is a positive step for working women, the bill is controversial. The Independent cites that Marie Claire Italy hailed the bill as a “standard-bearer of progress and social sustainability.” But Italy already has a very low rate of female participation in the workforce — only 61 percent of Italian women work, compared to 71 percent of American women. And many maintain that making period leave the law will do more harm than good.
Lorenza Pleuteri wrote in the magazine Donna Moderna that the plan could backfire on women, as “employers could become even more oriented to hire men rather than women.” Miriam Goi added on Vice Italy that the law could also “end up reinforcing stereotypes about women being more emotional during their periods.”
Despite the controversy, companies like Nike in the U.S. and U.K.-based Coexist have implemented similar practices. “As a manager of staff, I have seen women really
Not only does Baxter believe that it is good for women to practice self-care during menstruation, but that it would ultimately lead to a boost in productivity. “This is not about employees taking more time off, but working more flexibly and efficiently around their menstrual cycle and encouraging a work-life balance,” she explained in the Independent.
An additional 2012 study determined 20 percent of women experience such bad pain with their periods that it interferes with daily activities. The most common treatment is nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like aspirin,
The bottom line? While paid menstrual leave may be helpful for those who suffer from period pain, the long-term social cost for women could, unfortunately, outweigh the benefits.
What Do YOU Think?
Do you suffer from debilitating period pain? Is paid menstrual leave a good thing? Do you think it will — or should — ever become a broader policy in the United States?