Female staff brought up a point of menstrual pain at 1:30 pm.
Top Management unanimously agreed at 2:30 pm.
The policy was announced officially at 3:00 pm.
Yes, you read it right! We brought in a new policy at AtliQ where our female staff is now entitled to take up to 8 extra leaves throughout the year against their menstrual pain.
We understand that men and women are born with different biological needs, with the latter having to face more inconvenience every month. While they give us the most they could, the minimum we can offer is making room for their needs. And here is the best we give back for them- Menstrual Leave. Feel free to call a leave with no shame or stigma. No more taking sick leave with the general phrase” I’m not well” but instead stating the actual menstruation pain.
Unfortunately, even now in parts of India, awareness, and access to safe menstrual hygiene care is unavailable for many. For the ones who have easy access, society sees it as a taboo topic. Even the labor laws in India focus on economical support while physiological support is ignored to a certain extent. Menstrual leaves in India have been a long-debated topic that still lacks a spur impact. With a varying socio-economic condition and ranging demography in the country, acknowledging the need for menstrual leaves has been tougher.
Amidst all the taboos & practices, India is not the only country to consider period leave. Many countries like Japan, Italy, and South Korea have it as a part of their employee leave policy. It was until much recently, many Indian companies also started following footsteps and entitling female employees to get leave during menstruation. In India, companies like Zomato, Byju’s, Swiggy, FlyMyBiz, Culture Machine, Horses Stable News, etc have been pioneers in this significant change.
At AtliQ we aim at equal growth opportunities, irrespective of gender, which made us take this deeper look into the issue faced by our women and how it has been affecting their health- physically and mentally. We agree that we are late in this, but still understood and implemented this policy. We are proud of their work and want to convey gratitude to them. We hope this small endeavor of ours is a champion change. However, with this announcement, we are definitely not terming females as weak for their biological nature. Instead, we respect them for showing up with a smile even through the pain. They are not less productive due to their menstrual pain, but does it really mean that they have to force themselves!?
When we say AtliQ Technologies is a bottom-up company, we mean it. The seed of this decision was sown in one of the organisation improvement suggestion gatherings attended by all the employees. A group of girls brought in the suggestion of granting period leaves as they have to take a sick leave on their menstrual days and are short of leaves on actual medical necessities. The decision didn’t require much discussion, the management felt it was a right demand from the team. The policy was implemented immediately. Women’s Day celebration was just a week away. The management could have waited to announce it, but they didn’t. In India, we have this commonly used proverb- “कल करे सो आज कर, आज करे सो अब!!” which means It’s better to do it now rather than later. Moreover, this wasn’t just another policy announcement for us, which could wait. While speaking of the support, it is obvious that females welcomed it, the question arises about the other gender! How did our male staff react? They too welcomed it with all their heart. Not for a minute did they feel that this was a biased decision or unfair to them. Could we be more proud!?
We never trade in presenteeism, we believe in work done over working hours completed. The term for period pain is Dysmenorrhoea- which in Greek means “difficult monthly flow”. We can’t snatch away that pain, but isn’t it high time we take a step to ease it for them??