While periods are a completely natural occurrence, the society we live in has it so that talking about them is taboo. This stretches farther than that, however, as many women would rather just plow through the day while suffering from a particularly painful menstrual cycle rather than talk about it and get a day off.
In their attempt to make a difference, a British company introduces the period policy to help juggle work and painful cycles. Coexist CIC is a management company based in Bristol, and its director, as well as most of its employees, are mostly female. This doesn’t mean that the men are treated in anyway differently.
The new period policy will be different than actual sick days. One reason for this would be because of the fact that having your period is not a sickness. A second reason is because of how the ‘period leave’ would work. And the company’s director, Bex Baxter, does make a very good point about the practice.
I would see a lot of women at receptions suffer and whisper, “It’s my period,” and feeling really embarrassed that they can’t bulldoze through. It made me wake and up and say, something has to shift on this.
Also having suffered from painful periods in the past, Baxter decided to make those unpleasant days easier to endure for her fellow female co-workers. But if you think that the policy only applies to women, you’re actually quite mistaken. You see, the company is doing its best to keep a pleasant work environment.
One of Baxter’s few male co-workers has a serious migraine problem, and the same period policy applies to him. Instead of taking a day off and coming back the next day, he is allowed to self-manage. Everyone can take however much time off they need (within reasonable limits), and they are then allowed to just make up for that time when they feel up to it. It’s a very good, employee-friendly system.
Women do have cycles, it’s not about indulging it, it’s not about being victims to it. It’s about valuing the whole cycle and reconnecting to the power of natural cycles, rather than sitting yourselves in contrived, very male systems that don’t actually work for women.
Baxter will try having the policy adopted starting March 15, during a workshop held by the company. It will address all types of natural cycles, from weather cycles, to wake cycles, circadian rhythms, and even menstrual cycles. It will be addressed to multiple businesses, charity organizations, and lawmakers.
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