Here at UEA we’ve noticed a lot of Buzz around the ‘Period Policy’ that a Bristol based company has adopted and considering we’re a predominantly female office, there are some very mixed thoughts.
Some say ‘I think it’s a great idea. Periods can be completely debilitating’ and others ‘Is there a need for a policy? If every woman had time off once a month, would anything get done?’
For those who aren’t aware of what this ‘Period Policy’ is, it’s a legal policy that has been in place in countries like Japan that allows women to work from home/take time off during their menstruation cycle. This came about when a female manager recognised that some women at work were doubled over in pain and too embarrassed to say anything about it. Research shows that in the UK, 2% of 400 women had ‘severe’ period pain, while in another study, 14% said they were unable to go to work because of it.
Companies in Japan, South Korea and Indonesia have had this company policy in place since 1947 and international companies like Nike have also implemented this – so are UK employers being insensitive or is this just a great excuse for a few extra days off?
The ladies in our office all vary in age and suffer with different menstrual side effects and they can’t decide either way as being that we are a team of women it could have a big impact on our business but at the same time we can sympathise with those that suffer! So do we really need this policy to be implemented in the UK?
We’re lucky in the fact that with an understanding boss and colleagues, should periods ever be an issue, it’s met with compassion but can the same be said for the employees off in the towering sky scrapers of Canary Wharf, the NHS or even the Army? And what about for our male colleagues? I know some deserve a medal for what they get put through with their PMT’ing partners and work colleagues.
But this really is a complex issue covering some interesting subjects including; sexual equality, work performance and the financial implications that this policy may put on the business. For me, I want to keep it simple. Should an employee need time off for any debilitating ailment, women or man, it should be taken seriously but I want to hear your views on this ……. What do you think?????
For more information on this article see the below link and don’t forget its our “Women’s History month” this March and we are looking at some of the things that have made a difference for Women in the workplace along with some interesting little anecdotes and pictures!