Spain is all set to be the first Western country to offer a menstrual leave to working women suffering from period cramps. Under the scheme, the government will allow the menstruating women to take a work leave of up to three days each month. However, the Spanish government is reportedly set to endorse the action next week.
Spain will be the first Western country to do so, but other countries have done it before. Japan, South Korea, Indonesia, and Zambia have already started to grant menstrual leaves. The measure shall pass in Spain’s next cabinet meeting on Tuesday.
The reform package scheme of providing menstrual leaves also includes providing sanitary naps to school girls. According to media sources, Ángela Rodríguez, the Secretary of State for Equality, announced the policies to guarantee menstrual health. The scheme also entails reproductive recovery health for women who had an abortion.
Free Period Products
Rodríguez said, “We never discuss the rights related to menstrual health. The data related to it is chilling. One in four women chooses the feminine hygiene products she wants to buy due to financial reasons. Due to this, we have proposed free sanitary naps in educational and social centres.”
A menstrual leave aims to relieve women from painful period pains. Several menstruating women suffer from severe period pains called dysmenorrhea. It causes weakness and throbbing pains. “It is important to clarify what a painful period is. We are not talking about a slight discomfort, but about serious symptoms such as diarrhoea, severe headaches, fever,” said Rodríguez.
Moreover, the scheme will remove VAT from sanitary naps and tampons retail prices. The government will also provide free period products to women in marginalised communities. Furthermore, the Spanish government plans to remove the requirement for girls more than 16-years of age to take parental permission for abortion.
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