Menopause in the Workplace
In recent weeks there have been some interesting articles written in the UK broadsheets highlighting the growth in awareness of menopause in the workplace and the need for companies to have policies in place to recognise this as a serious matter, in much the same way that maternity leave was introduced in 1975 allowing women with children to continue with a career.
According to the ONS menopausal women are the fastest growing demographic in the workforce with the average age of women going through menopause at 51 and approximately 8 out of 10 of menopausal women are still working.
3 out of 4 women will experience symptoms and 1 in 4 could be suffering serious effects.
If you consider the statistic that one in three of the labour market will soon be over 50 and retirement for women extending to 67/68 it is clear that the workplace is becoming older with needs that should be addressed by employers.
Menopause has long been misunderstood or ignored but with companies such as Henpicked and Positive Pause developing programmes for employers and employees to tackle the numerous issues surrounding the subject there has been a significant shift in mindset.
No surprises then that the menopause is being cited for an increasing number of allegations against employers for sex discrimination or unfair dismissal.
When women are waking numerous times throughout the night, thanks to nightsweats, it is easy to understand the exhaustion and lack of focus which could result. Factor in the loss of confidence as performance levels drop it is understandable that women choose to leaving their positions than suffer in an environment where little or no support is available.
James Timpson CEO of Timpson @JamesTcobbler wrote that companies need to stop the menopause from hijacking women’s careers and consequently impacting their financial security.
The good news is that MPs are now examining the lack of support for menopausal women and with Carolyn Harris Labour MP for Swansea East beating the drum with the creation of an all party parliamentary group on the Menopause, it looks like the menopausal voice is getting a lot louder and being taken seriously.
Is it possible to name the many employers who are now accredited Menopause Friendly Employers? I do love this video: https://menopausefriendly.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2021/07/HSBC-UK-first-direct-MS-Bank-Menopause-Friendly_social-2.mp4
Shows what employers are doing, and demonstrates the action they’re taking: https://menopausefriendly.co.uk/the-uks-first-accredited-menopause-friendly-employers/