The menopause is something all women go through, usually later in life, and the trend for employees to work for longer brings with it the importance of considering of issues that come with. This issue is specific to women, but it’s important that all staff understand the impact, which can be immense.
ACAS has recently posted guidelines on how employers can support staff who are going through menopause. Steps include:
- Creating and implementing a menopause policy
- Being flexible such as changing working hours where necessary
- Creating an open and trusting culture within teams so employees feel able to discuss any physical or mental impacts
- Implementing low cost changes such as providing desk fans or allowing women who are going through the menopause to work from home when necessary
- Providing training for managers so they are aware of how to properly and compassionately deal with concerns.
ACAS reminds employers that not amending policy may result in legal claims. Under the Equality Act 2010, workers may bring claims on the grounds of sex, disability and age if employers fail to properly accommodate the needs of menopausal women. Also, the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 requires an employer, where reasonably practical, to ensure health, safety and welfare at work. There are easy steps that can be taken to help staff deal with menopause and failure to do so could result in liability if a legal claim is brought.
For further information the ACAS guidance can be found here: https://www.acas.org.uk/index.aspx?articleid=6752.
If you need help in addressing this or any other employment law issue, please do get in touch!