British company offers 'period leave' for women

In a new initiative aiming to sync up with female staff’s “natural rhythms,” a British social community group is allowing women to take time off of work during their monthly cycles.

Coexist, which employs 31 people— seven of which are men— hopes their policy can change the stigma around “women’s issues,” community director Bex Baxter told the Mirror.

Baxter said that by allowing women to miss work during their periods, the company may be more productive.

"There is a misconception that taking time off makes a business unproductive - actually it is about synchronizing work with the natural cycles of the body,” she told the Mirror. “Immediately after a period is a time when women are actually three times as productive as usual.”

The idea of a “period policy” isn’t new— menstrual leave began in Japan in 1947 and other countries, including South Korea, Taiwan and Indonesia, have laws in place, the Mirror reported. Nike is thought to be the only worldwide company to officially include menstrual leave as part of their code of conduct.

The idea has been enthusiastically received by all employees, Bex noted.

"For too long there's been a taboo surrounding periods - I have women staff telling me their ashamed to admit they're in pain,” she said. “I want us to break down that shame and replace the negativity with positivity.”

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