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Women to be offered three days 'menstrual leave' each month in Spain

By Stephen Pitts

Spain is to become the first Western country to offer 'menstrual leave' for women suffering period pain at work under a government plan to guarantee menstrual health.

The Spanish government will approve the measure next week, announced the Cadena Ser radio station, with the leave capped at three days per month. Other countries in the world already grant menstrual leave, including Japan, South Korea, Indonesia and Zambia.

The Mail reports that under a reform package set to be passed at a cabinet meeting on Tuesday, schools will be required to provide sanitary pads for girls who need them. The Secretary of State for Equality and against Gender Violence, Ángela Rodríguez, announced a package of measures to guarantee menstrual health and recovery of reproductive health on March 3, including giving leave to women who have an abortion.

"The rights related to menstrual health have never been discussed and the data is chilling," Rodríguez told El Periodico. "One in four women cannot choose the feminine hygiene products she wants to buy for financial reasons. That is why we propose that they can be dispensed free of charge in educational and social centres."

Many women who menstruate suffer from severe pain known as dysmenorrhea, which can be debilitating in severe cases. Rodríguez added: "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."

Sanitary pads and tampons will have VAT removed from their sale price in supermarkets as well as being provided free of charge to women in marginalised social circumstances.

The Spanish government also plans to remove the requirement for 16 and 17-year-olds seeking an abortion to ask parental permission. Rodríguez has also announced her plans for Spain to become a leader in developing the male contraceptive pill, which could begin human trials as soon as July. It will also pass a law targeting the trafficking of women for prostitution in Spain.

For more stories from where you live, visit InYourArea.

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Dive Deeper:
Spain introduces law to give people three days off a month for 'menstrual leave'
The move is part of a package covering the 'tampon tax' and access to period productions and abortion.
Spain plans to offer menstrual leave to women who suffer severe period pain
The Spanish government will approve the measure next week, with the leave capped at three days per month
Spanish women suffering painful periods given three-day menstrual leave
Those suffering severe period pains will be permitted to have up to three days off work every month
Spain first in west to offer period pain leave
Women with severe period pain will be able to take up to three days a month off work, according to…
One subscription that gives you access to news from hundreds of sites
Spain to ease abortion limits for over-16s and allow menstrual leave
Parental permission to end for terminations and up to five days’ leave a month for painful periods
Debate in Spain over 'menstrual leave' plan
Madrid (AFP) - Spain's plan to become the first European nation to allow women to take "menstrual leave" from work…
Get all your news in one place