Skip to main content

Menstrual Leave, Discrimination or Necessity?

A recent news notification brought to our notice that two of Indian companies have started a culture of menstruation leave for their female employees. Though many foreign countries have already given this gesture to their female staff which allows them a day off when they come across with their menstruation cramp every month. In countries like Japan, Taiwan, Indonesia and South Korea, working women have legitimate right for paid leave if and when they are not able to work during their periods. Some countries, like Germany, even wanted to allow paid leave of upto three days for working ladies with regard to social sustainability concerns. However, this brought up a debate on this matter that continues till now.


The debate is about how fair and important are the menstrual leaves. On one hand we all know how hard it may be to manage at workplace for a women on the first day of her periods, we also know a day of paid leave is a loss of business. Some people including women believe that a law allowing women menstrual leave would discourage and refrain employers from hiring them. There are also critics who believe that this gesture of women social security is going to encourage issues of gender discrimination. There are some professions, like the police services or being a sports person, in which it may be hard to give a women her menstrual leave when she has to perform. Though it is also argued that even if women are not allowed a leave when facing such cramp, they would be hardly able to give their 100% to the business.

A research on reproductive health in London explores that period pain can be as “bad as having a heart attack” and I as a women, I have experienced it. I know how all women manage to live with it during their periods. When at the workplace, our period trouble is easily noticed by everyone around. To our female co-workers, it is easy to indicate what is there causing us look uncomfortable. But to the male co-workers and friends, it is not easy to explain this discomfort. Even to the most open minded women, it is a bit of hesitation as mere indications would not be sufficient to tell them what we are going through. And explain it completely is something seriously not to be attempted at least for that moment. Hence, “I am not well today”, “it’s just a bit of weakness”, “there’s stomach pain” or “have some fever today” are the common excuses we make. Aren’t these? But have you ever wondered why we cannot openly say that “I am suffering from period cramp today”, after all menstruation or period cramps are no disease women suffer from. These are as natural as our month end salary. 


Whatever be it, Culture Machine, a media agency that has recently announced menstrual leaves for its female staff has also determined to file a petition to make menstrual leave a legal right of all working women in our country. Women are full of strength, creativity and talent and respecting their biological distinction with men is not promoting discrimination, according to me. Instead, it is encouraging participation of women more open mindedly and more generously. Possibly, not a paid leave but a menstrual leave is something that would allow most of us to escape from giving silly excuses when the reason of our day off can be perfectly explained as “a menstrual leave”.

Listen This Post Stop Listening Post

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

My Monsoon Love Hate Love Story

Last year, almost the same time, I packed every belonging of mine and landed to a place which is close to my heart. With bag and baggage, my family moved from Delhi to Lucknow. It was monsoon time when I came here and thank god I witnessed a prosperous rain. Lucknow, though smaller compared to Delhi, is a place I distinguish since childhood. The city of Nawabs is believed as the happiest city in India. As our move was well calculated, my husband and I made sure to have all those things in our lives that I missed being in Delhi. A bigger house (that we can afford), green surroundings, street food access that we missed in Delhi and people who talk in our native tongue.

The Hate Story

I hated the rain when I was in Delhi. My house was in a busy lane of a crowded Delhi locality, and I was living on the second floor of the building. Hence neither I had easy access to the road, nor to terrace. When it rained, I was forced to stay inside. Roads used to get sunk even after the rain of half an…

K For Kalpasi - An Unknown Treasure

Good food is really a blessing, isn't it? And as I am talking about those who really go into making an average food to finger licking, I realized our spices undoubtedly do magic with the everyday food. Apart from the basic ingredients and a well-known, trusted recipe, a play of spices and herbs can really lift up a preparation. Every region in India uses spices to make their local food extraordinary. It is only a matter of spices that change the taste of the same Shambhar in Tamil Nadu, Kerala and in north India. We all make Chole but the game of spices do something to what we relish as famous Panjabi Chole.  It is all about the little nuances that go into creating a dish from ordinary to exceptional.

A handful of spices always remain in our kitchens and we know their unique flavors. However, there are a number of spices are little unheard-of. While these form an essential part of a few local innate cuisines in some part of India, the rest of India does not know much about them. O…

The Tradition of Respecting and Celebrating Food

This post is for #BharatKaZaika is a blogging event conducted by #BlogBoosterIndia. 

A story to begin with

After winning the great battle of kurukshetra, Yudhisthira was now king of Hastinapur. And then one day, all of sudden Krishna went to Yudhishithira and started saying in urgency "dadasvannam dadasvannam dadasvannam yudhisthira (“Give food! Give food! Give food! Yudhisthira). As the great battle had affected everyone in the country, food was the first way to start giving relief to the suffering countrymen.  As suggested by Krishna, yudhisthira then organized the great asvamedha-yajna. Mahabharata records an extraordinary celebration of distributing food as a part of the sacred year-long rites and rituals.

Our food heritage

You see, In our country, there is a tradition of respecting and celebrating food. The spirit of classical Indian civilization guided that primary duty of the king is to ensure that none within his domain suffers from hunger. Hence the king ensured that people…