A nonprofit in Bristol called Coexist has enacted a "period policy."
The policy will allow women to take paid time off without claiming any of their sick time. (The company did not specify whether the policy is open to males who have periods.)
Apparently, the goal is to work with women’s natural cycles by allowing them to head home during “that time of the month.”
This is a pretty stark contrast to the way most jobs deal with menstrual cycles.
At most workplaces, people save their PTO for days that they’re completely incapable of coming in for the day.
The majority of women are certainly annoyed and inconvenienced when they have their period, but it’s not something that keeps them out of the office.
Interestingly enough, Japan has offered time off to women on their periods since 1947.
Is it time for the rest of the world to get with the program?
There are many women who suffer great pain and discomfort during their period. For them, this kind of policy could be a lifesaver.
In fact, a study done by the American Academy of Family Physicians found that period pain could be severe enough to interfere with daily activities in up to 20 percent of women.
John Guillebaud, a professor of reproductive health at University College London has even been quoted as saying that for some women, period pain can be “almost as bad as having a heart attack.”
Bex Baxter, one of Coexist's directors, claims that women are actually more productive in the week after their periods.
“The spring section of the cycle, immediately after a period is a time when women are actually three times as productive as usual,” she says. “So it is about balancing work-load in line with the natural cycles of the body.”
A lot of people are applauding the idea of a period policy.
And if you’ve ever been doubled over in pain due to your menstrual cycle, you definitely get it.
Of course, the policy also has its detractors…