A new law allows women with heavy periods to take time off work

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He Spanish Congress of Deputies definitively approved this Thursday a law so that female workers suffering from painful periods can take advantage of a “menstrual leave”, a pioneering measure in Europe for, according to the left-wing government, break taboos

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“Today is a historic day for promotion of feminist rights“, wrote the Minister of Equality on Twitter, Irene Monterò, of Podemos, the radical left-wing party and minority partner in the governing coalition with the Socialists.

adopted by 185 votes in favour, 154 against and 3 abstentionsthis law makes Spain the first country in Europe and one of the few in the world to contemplate this measure, in imitation of Japan, Indonesia and Zambia.

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Period pains can be moderate to stitches that make it impossible to perform any activity.  Photo: Shutterstock.

Period pains can be moderate to stitches that make it impossible to perform any activity. Photo: Shutterstock.

The text of the law states that “it will have the consideration of particular situation of temporary disability for common contingencies, that sick leave in which the woman can find herself in the event of secondary disabling menstruation or secondary dysmenorrhea associated with pathologies such as endometriosis”.

“It is a question of giving an adequate regulation to this pathological situation in order to be able Eliminate any kind of negative workplace bias“adds the law.

The law it does not specify how long this license will last due to illness.

The “menstrual leave” has aroused reservations in the socialist part of the government and it is criticized by the UGT trade union (General Union of Workers).

Menstrual discomfort shouldn't interfere with your routine or quality of life.  Photo: Shutterstock.

Menstrual discomfort shouldn’t interfere with your routine or quality of life. Photo: Shutterstock.

The UGT, one of the country’s two largest unions, has expressed concern that employers who want to avoid them are running out stop hiring women.

The Conservative People’s Party (PP), the main opposition party, has warned of the risk of “marginalization, stigmatization” and “negative labor market consequences” for women.

Menstrual bleeding is one of the key measures in a much larger bill to increase the access to abortion in public hospitalswho practice less than 15% of abortions in the country, mainly due to the massive conscientious objection of doctors.

Many women have to travel hundreds of kilometers to get an abortion due to the lack of a public service or a nearby specialized clinic in some areas of the country.

The law will also allow minors have an abortion without parental permission from the age of 16reversing a requirement introduced by a Conservative government in 2015.

Abortion was decriminalized in Spain in 1985 and then legalized in 2010, but it remains a right fraught with obstacles in this traditionally Catholic country.

The law approved this Thursday also provides for the delivery of more sex education in schools and the free distribution of contraceptives and menstrual hygiene products in institutions.

Spain is considered a reference country for women’s rights in Europe, especially since the approval of a law on gender-based violence in 2004.

The Sanchez government declares herself a feminist and has more women than men in its ranks.

Source: Clarin

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