The first Swedish workplace to receive a menstrual certificate

Sweden now has its first menstrual-certified workplace. Since December 2018, the Swedish organization MENSEN – forum för menstruation has been working on developing a so-called “menstrual certification”. The project has received financial support from the Swedish Gender Equality Agency. With help from Forza Football, MENSEN now has developed methods and materials that provides workplaces with the tools to integrate menstruation as a dimension in their regular work on health and safety in the workplace. In September 2019, Forza Football was the first workplace to receive a menstrual certificate.

I was shocked when I realized how little I know about menstruation and the fact that no one has ever taught me about it before. It’s a significant part of every woman’s life, but I as a non-menstruator knew very little about this. I’m very grateful over the fact that MENSEN taught me and my whole company about the menstrual cycle and menstrual health. I think it should be mandatory for every workplace place to take this certificate.” says Patrik Arnesson, CEO, Forza Football.

Negative norms, taboos and prejudices around menstruation risk limiting the participation and well-being of women and trans people in working life. Surveys among employees at the pilot workplace show that the menstrual certification has resulted in an increased knowledge level regarding physiological and sociocultural aspects of menstruation and the menstrual cycle. Moreover, it has contributed to a change of attitudes among employees.

I have learned so many things after attending MENSENs presentation. The way Klara and Rebecka showed the passion about the topic has just fascinated me. I hope more people, at all levels of society, can have the opportunity to have more knowledge about menstruation and get the understanding that it can contribute to improve everyone’s life.” says Marco Vavassori, who is employee at Forza Football.

The project received a lot of attention already from start. Critics questioned the necessity of a menstrual certification. Now, we have certified our first workplace and it has indeed made a difference! It’s clear that the menstrual certification has contributed with new knowledge among employees on the menstrual cycle, and that it was the start of a productive discussion at the workplace. MENSEN will now continue the strive to spread menstrual-awareness.” says Klara Rydström, project manager, MENSEN.

Want to know more about the project? Contact:
Klara Rydström, project manager, MENSEN – forum för menstruation, klara.rydstrom@mensen.se
Antonia Simon, chairperson, MENSEN – forum för menstruation, info@mensen.se

About MENSEN – forum för menstruation:
Since 2013, MENSEN has been working to increase people’s knowledge of the menstrual cycle and break taboos. We raise awareness through education and opinion-formation. We work with several types of training adapted to different target groups. We use campaigns, events, lectures and training, debate articles and social media to take a stand and spread information about menstrual cycle-related issues to the public.