India is a country of rich tradition and culture. It boasts abundant diversity in climate, language, race, geography, religion among other forms. However, it still remains a country of widespread myths and taboos. Such prejudices often oppress the already marginalised sections of the society. In India, marginalised or vulnerable groups often include women, scheduled castes, migrants, persons with disabilities, aged, and children. For instance, menstruation commonly knows as periods, is a big taboo in the country. Thus, the pre-conceived notions and stigma attached to periods make most of the women and transgender people shy away from such topics.
The times are changing and women and transgender people are taking up more and more roles in the socio-economic world. We can feel their active presence in corporate job roles, entrepreneurship, science, commerce, liberal arts, education, social work and many more areas. Subsequently, it becomes important to provide inclusive work-spaces for everyone. We should aim to cater to their special needs in order to create a more accepting and warm workplace.
While talking about the same, period leaves have always been a hot topic. However, the subject has received a lukewarm response. The notion has amassed massive support. It would build a safer work culture. It aims to introduce an inclusive space for all the workers by addressing their personal needs.
In a recent move by Zomato, the company has introduced up to ten days of period leaves for women and transgender people. In the words of CEO, Deepinder Goyal, “Zomato understands that men and women are born with different biological realities. It is our job to make sure that we make room for our biological needs, while not lowering the bar for the quality of our work and the impact that we create.” The initiative has garnered a lot of support from people. To know more, visit https://www.zomato.com/blog/period-leaves.
However, introducing period leaves would lead to a ‘hiring bias’, according to some. Companies will prefer male employees over women or transgender employees. This would deter their position in the workplace. Moreover, it might push them out of the decision-making roles. But again, work today is determined by the quality than the hours spent sitting on an office chair.
However, the concept of period leaves for women and the transgender community is more-so based on the notion of equity. It aims to address one’s biological needs while promoting a comprehensive work culture for all. Thus, we need to understand and respect one’s biological needs and differences. It is a step to provide a safer space for people from all communities and genders.