In the event of severe menstrual pain, employees of an Indian food delivery service will be able to take up to ten days a year off paid.
The company’s CEO’s announcement sparked a social media debate in India. In the country, menstruation is still a big taboo subject, women are considered unclean during their period and should not enter temples or touch certain foods, for example.
The company’s chief executive wrote in a recent statement that taking period leave should not be fraught with shame or stigma. “You should simply be able to tell people in internal groups or emails that you are taking a day off.” Each cycle, women and transgender people in the company can take one day off each – ten times a year.
The announcement has led to much discussion on social media. “Today, some period holidays may not be right, just as many had protested against maternity leave,” Angellica Aribam, the founder of an Indian organization that promotes women in politics, wrote on Twitter. “”First-day period leave” may be dressed up as progressive, but it actually trivializes the feminist agenda for equal opportunity, especially in male-dominated professions,” the Indian journalist and Washington Post commentator Barkha Dutt disagreed. She added: “Take the fight for the right of women to be allowed into military combat, fly fighter jets or be sent into space.”