This Country May Likely Become First Western One With a Paid Menstrual Leave Policy

In recent news for women in Italy, the country may likely become the Western hemisphere's first-ever country to create an official policy around paid menstrual leave for female workers, the Independent reports.

While similar policies exist in some Eastern countries, including parts of China, Japan, and South Korea and a few Western private companies, according to Independent, this will be the first country-wide policy plan in the West.

The hope for this policy is primarily to increase Italy's below-average percentage for working women, as only 61 percent of the country's women work. This falls below Europe's average of 72 percent.

But, while the hope is for this number to increase with more flexible policies for women in the workplace, some believe it could do the opposite.

The Independent, for example, suggests that the potential policy "presents a catch-22: While it could help solve a real issue for Italian women, it may become another excuse for employers not to hire them in the first place," adding that it could potentially reinforce "stereotypes about women being more emotional during their periods."

The debate continues as experts continue to wonder: Should menstruation be an economic and labor issue?

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