What is the menstrual leave adopted by Spain?

What is the menstrual leave adopted by Spain?

The Spanish government is proposing to give women the opportunity to take one or more days off work during their period. But how exactly do these menstrual pads work, a first in Europe?

According to Passeport Santé, 50% to 80% of women report experiencing menstrual pain every month. This pain would have a direct impact on the lives of 5 to 15% of them. Among the main harmful effects of menstruation: absenteeism from school or work.

The Spanish government proposes better consideration of the difficulties of menstruating people in companies. Because working for equality cannot work by denying the differences between people.

Among the measures proposed by Spain is the menstrual leave. This consists of allowing women to take days off when their periods are too onerous. Many variations are possible as to the number of days allowed, their reimbursement, their rationale (need for medical advice or not) and the manner in which they are applied.

A measure that is not new

If Spain is “the first country in Europe to introduce fully government-funded temporary sick leave for painful and disabling menstrual periods”Measurement already exists in other countries around the world and even in France in certain companies like La Collective or Louis the watch manufacturer.

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Japan was the first country to introduce menstrual leave. At the request of the labor movement, it was introduced in a first company in 1931. In 1947 this right was voted on at the national level. There is no limit to the days, but they are not compulsorily paid.

In South Korea, companies that force an employee to work despite their application for menstrual leave face a fine of 3,750 euros. Indonesia has offered two days paid vacation at the beginning of each cycle since 1947. Zambia, the Philippines, Taiwan… many countries have taken the plunge.

In France, 68% of women would support the establishment of menstrual leave according to an IFOP poll for Eve & Co.

Progress or further discrimination against women?

For some feminist groups, the generalization of menstrual leave could lead to even more discrimination in employment. In fact, according to the Women’s Foundation, has a woman applying for a job 22% less likely to be taken compared to a man of equal ability. The higher the positions in the hierarchy, the more this number increases. One of the main reasons for this situation would be the risk of ‘pregnancy’ and therefore child-related absenteeism. This is explained in particular by the different lengths of maternity and paternity leave.

It is difficult to explain the impact that menstrual leave policies can have on women’s labor market integration. Few women actually take this vacation in countries where they are legal. Only 0.09% of women in Japan would have dared to take this vacation in 2016). This would prove that menstrual leave cannot have the same impact on discrimination in the workplace as maternity leave. Nonetheless, it is the Asian countries that have introduced these holidays Countries with an extremely high gender pay gap. Women are therefore more interested in having their feminine condition forgotten. You therefore cannot enjoy this additional security.

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However, promoting well-being in the workplace has always been a guarantee of increased productivity. This would also allow Breaking taboos that lead women to adopt strategies such as B. Setting RTT days, seeking medical treatment without a prescription, having to organize yourself to change your periodic protection, etc.. Measures that have their price and put a psychological strain on women.

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