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333: Better Menstruation Policy Improves Women’s Lives with Professor Marcy Karin

Hello Well Women! On the show today, I Interview Professor Marcy Karin, law professor, scholar, and Director of the Legislation and Civil Rights Clinic at the University of the District of Columbia. Through the Clinic, she supervises students’ systemic reform work at the intersection of gender, disability and racial justice for community-based organizations. Her scholarship advances social justice for current and former menstruators, breastfeeding workers, domestic violence survivors, people with disabilities, and the military community. As the 2023 Fulbright-Scotland Distinguished Scholar at the University of Edinburgh, she explored “Menstrual Justice at Work and School: Public Policy Lessons from Scotland’s Period Products Law and the UK’s Equality Act.” She has a LL.M. from Georgetown University Law Center, a JD from Stanford Law School and a BA from American University. Professor Karin also self-identifies as a disabled advocate, legislative lawyer, storyteller, mentor, mentee, carer, neighbor, niece, aunt, cousin, friend and explorer. She has been featured in the Washington Post, USA Today, The Ferret, Arizona Republic, Law360, and Ms.

On the show we discuss:

  • Professor Marcy Karen’s career trajectory from law to advocacy around menstruation, menopause, and reproductive justice.
  • Scotland’s period products law and how it changed cultural attitudes, emphasizing the need for multi-level government involvement in these issues.
  • Making menstruation and menopause more visible through policies like eliminating the “tampon tax”, providing accommodations in workplaces and schools, and expanding menstrual health education.
  • The importance of inclusivity, connecting people, and embracing opportunities rather than a linear career path.

And much more

Also, The Well Woman Show is a proud media partner of the Work and Family Researchers Network conference happening on June 19-22, 2024 at Concordia University in Montreal, Quebec Canada. You can hear our interview with conference chair Ellen Gallinsky at episode 325  and of course Prof. Marcy Karin is on the show today, a long time contributor to the Work and Family Researchers Network who’ll be presenting there this year as well.

The 2024 conference theme is Big Questions in Work-Family, which will be part of a two-year agenda. These are the cutting-edge global questions that are not yet fully answered or recognized, including:

  1. CHANGES IN WORK – What are the meanings of work at different life stages, for different groups, and in different kinds of jobs? How is work organized? What is the future of work and for whom?
  2. CHANGES IN FAMILY LIFE – How are families and family experiences changing around the globe and what changes might we expect? For example, fertility rates are declining in high-income countries and there are reports of an epidemic of loneliness. What other changes are evident and what are the implications?
  3. CHANGES IN WORK-LIFE INTERFACE: What theories, concepts, and measures best explain new and emerging intersections between work and family?
  4. THE LIFE COURSE – How do changes in work and family impact children and their capacities to enter adult roles, for adults to successfully navigate transitions, and for older populations to age well?
  5. SOLUTIONS AND PROMISING PRACTICES – What are the most promising solutions in policy and practice in the global north and south? What are the challenges and best opportunities for advancing equity and social justice?

The conference’s objective is to chart an agenda for the future of work-family research, policy and practice. And there will be numerous events to connect a global community of scholars with thought leaders in media, philanthropy, practice, policy, and social change. Find more information at

The Well Woman Show is thankful for support from Collective Action Strategies – a consulting firm that supports systemic change so that women and families thrive, and by the Well Woman Life Movement Challenge Quiz at

As always, all the links and information are at / 333show

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