Mumbai-based digital media firm Culture Machine recently announced a First Day of Period Leave policy for its 75 women employees. Within the same quarter, another India-based media firm, Mathrubhumi announced a similar decision. Menstrual leave is in the news in Italy as well, where the Parliament was debating a paid period leave policy.
With enough industry voices for and against such a decision, the findings of the latest YouGov survey suggest that period pain does affect women in the workplace in a number of ways – with the physical ability to work impacted on their most painful days owing to weakness (58%).
Among more than 7,600 respondents across Singapore, Malaysia and Hong Kong, and more; a similar 57% cited their ability to concentrate in the office impacted by period pain, an issue agreed to by 53% of 1,103 respondents in Malaysia.
The issue was prevalent in Singapore and Hong Kong as well, where 54% and 64% respectively admitted that women employees have felt the physical impact most from their monthly pains while at work.
Close to one-third in Singapore (31%) say a short break away from their desk helps, while 30% in Hong Kong have taken time out to buy painkillers.
What would you do about it?
A vast majority of respondents (46%) in Malaysia have confided in their employers when faced with period pain. In Hong Kong, respondents were more comfortable (33%) citing another reason than period pain for their discomfort at work. In Singapore, however, none of these options appealed to respondents (39%), thus not letting their employer in on any discomfort faced at the workplace at all.