Period Policy: Paid days off for women during their period?

Period Policy: Paid days off for women during their period?
Some say products on the market could help relieve symptoms during menstrual cycle. (Source: WOIO)

CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - We might be seeing the beginning of a new attitude regarding women and the menstrual cycle.

While many, especially in the workplace see the topic as taboo one company is trying to change that by offering extra time off once a month.

This is called a 'Period Policy,' and as you can imagine not only is it raising eyebrows, it's raising some very mixed reaction from all kinds of people.


Amber Johnson is excited to hear about something like this as she shows off her pizza dough tossing ability working at the Mellow Mushroom in Lakewood. "It's rough" she explains talking about how much she dreads working through that time of the month.  "No break no matter what time of the month, it's hard," she says.

In fact it's easy to find women out and about on Cleveland's streets all for it with responses like "it's good to have time off and take a break," and,
"oh...that would be just wonderful, I'll agree with that."


Even some men giving the thumbs up, saying things like, "I think it's a great idea because they have attitudes around that time," and "why not, they should understand, men should understand that."

It's a company in the U.K. offering up a very special understanding.

Coexist is making headlines for implementing a policy allowing women paid period leave every month. The company director, a woman, is quoted as
saying, "I want us to break down that shame and replace the negativity with positivity," adding, "if you work with your natural rhythms, your creativity and intelligence is more fulfilled and that's got to be good for business."

But, good is not how everyone sees it.

"I actually totally disagree with this policy," says Dr. Linda Bradley, OB/GYN, at the Cleveland Clinic.

She makes it clear it simply doesn't make sense to her considering all the products and treatments available now.

To her, the period given power to interrupt life is the sign of a real problem, "I'd say more important than taking time off, take time to see your physician. I want to know why something is bothering my patient so much that they would have to miss work."

She says she will give a patient an excuse from work during their period once, then she will give them an appointment to see her to make sure they won't have to do that again.

Others have other reasons for seeing red flags on this though with comments like, "No, I don't think so because we make it through it so far," and "I think it's kind of  bizarre, I obviously go through it, and I work through it."

One man even putting it this way, "I think that's a shot a women saying they can't handle themselves during their period and I think it's useless."

In other words, patronizing vs. progressive is what "period policy talk" comes down to and it's talk we can probably expect to hear a lot more of in days ahead.

While it's a pretty new idea to most of us in the U.S., apparently employers in some other countries, mostly Asian countries, implemented period policies years ago.

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