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Women In Spain To Be Offered Three Days Of Menstrual Leave Every Month

Women In Spain To Be Offered Three Days Of Menstrual Leave Every Month

The country is the first to trial this in Europe

Women in Spain are to now be offered up to three days of menstrual leave when suffering with painful periods.

The move comes as new legislation is expected to passed in Spain next week, making it the first country in Europe to offer such support.

Similar menstrual leave is currently offered elsewhere around the world, including in Japan, South Korea, Indonesia and Zambia.

Women with painful periods will now be offered up to three days of menstrual leave per month in Spain. (

Research from the Spanish Gynaecology and Obstetrics Society revealed that around one-third of women who menstruate suffer from dysmenorrhea, resulting in painful periods. Not only can the periods themselves be painful but they can come with serious symptoms such as diarrhoea, severe headaches and fever. It is currently unknown why it is more painful for some women than others, but pains can last up to 72 hours. 

A survey by the charity Bloody Good Period suggested that 73 percent of women struggle with work when menstruating.

The Spanish Secretary of State for Equality and Against Gender Violence, Ángela Rodríguez, told El Periodico that the statistics from similar studies were 'unacceptable'. 

A Bloody Good Period survey suggested that 73% of women struggle with work when menstruating. (

She said: "This is unacceptable and should make doctors and society reflect. When the problem cannot be solved medically, we believe that it is very sensible that there is a temporary disability associated with this issue.

"Symptoms that when there is a disease that entails them, a temporary disability is granted. Therefore the same should happen with menstruation, and that there is the possibility that if a woman has a very painful period, she can stay home."

Other measures to improve menstrual health are also being brought in with the new laws in Spain. These include a requirement for schools to provide sanitary products for girls who need them. Additionally, VAT from the sale of pads and tampons will also be removed in supermarkets and for others products will be free.

Ms Rodríguez added: "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."

Whilst the move in Spain is being seen as a landmark change, there are other countries in Europe who have expressed wanting to see similar changes.

The UK in particular has highlighted that hygiene poverty has been impacted by the rise of the cost of living, and hygiene banks have been set up across the UK to try and tackle the growing issue. 

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Health, News, World News