A woman with severe menstrual pain
Image: Courtesy

The next time you are crippled with pain during your menstrual cycle and you live in Spain, you don't have to drag yourself to work.

On Thursday, the Spanish parliament approved the creation of a sick leave for women suffering from immobilizing periods.

This marks the beginning of a revolution in Europe as it is the first country in its continent to pass a paid menstrual leave law. 


The new bill creates the possibility for women to call in sick “in case of incapacitating menstruation,” the Spanish Congress said in a statement on  Thursday.

The law passed after receiving 185 votes against 154 permits for a three day menstrual leave, which could be extended to five days, for those with debilitating periods that can cause severe cramps, nausea, dizziness and even vomiting.


For those who wish to use this law, they will need to produce a doctor’s note and the public security system of Spain will foot the bill.


Over the years different countries have had debates on whether to consider implementing a paid menstrual leave bill for women in the workplace.

Critics have argued out that it's not a matter of urgency as women could and are still working during their menstrual cycles. 

Menstrual leave is a type of leave where women may have the option of taking paid or unpaid leave from their workplace when they are experiencing their monthly menstrual cycle.

What most people fail to understand is that the period can cause severe discomfort, pain, emotional problems, and other health issues.


The topic of menstruation has remained a taboo in several third-world countries, the matter of menstrual leave is often associated with women’s work efficiency and workplace sexism.

Despite all that, a number of countries have accepted and acknowledged that period pain is something that affects the modern-day woman in her day in routine and have an existing law that allows women to take some time off during that time of the month.

These countries include; Japan, Indonesia, Zambia, South Korea, and Taiwan. In Japan, the legislation has been in effect for 70 years now. 

Just as Spain has pushed forward the agenda of women getting menstrual leave it is time for the rest of the world to embrace our women and the nature that comes with being a woman.