Paid menstrual leave in France

(HRNW) – The town of Saint-Ouen on the northern edge of Paris has become the first French municipality to grant paid medical leave to female staff suffering from period pain, hoping to “break a taboo” on the subject and inspire similar moves at the national level.

The scheme, which came into force on March 27, allows the city’s 1,200 women employees to take up to two days off each month, subject to a doctor’s approval, without loss of salary.

It comes a month after Spain’s left-wing government passed groundbreaking legislation granting similar rights to women nationwide, in a first for a European country.

Saint-Ouen’s Socialist mayor Karim Bouamrane first announced the move on March 8, to coincide with International Women’s Day, saying he hoped to inspire French legislators to follow suit.
“We must put an end to this suffering in silence – and indeed this denial of suffering,” the mayor told France Info radio on Monday, noting that up to one in every two women experienced painful and sometimes incapacitating periods.