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Menopause and the workplace

Inquiry

This inquiry examines the extent of discrimination faced by menopausal people in the workplace, and investigates how Government policy and workplace practices can better support those experiencing menopause.

A 2019 survey conducted by the Chartered Institute for Personnel and Development (CIPD) found that three in five menopausal women- usually aged between 45 and 55- were negatively affected at work and that almost 900,000 women in the U.K. left their jobs over an undefined period of time because of menopausal symptoms. This could mean that women are leaving businesses “at the peak of their experience” which will “impact productivity”. Women in this age group are likely to be eligible for senior management roles, and so their exit can lessen diversity at executive levels. It can also contribute to the gender pay-gap and feed into a disparity in pensions.

Under the Equality Act 2010, menopause discrimination is largely covered under three protected characteristics: age, sex and disability discrimination. The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 provides for safe working, which extends to the working conditions when experiencing menopausal symptoms. There have been several calls made for further legislation to require employers to put in place a workplace menopause policy to protect women going through the menopause against discrimination whilst at work.

The Government Equalities Office 2019 ‘roadmap’ on gender equality commits the Government to conduct research into “what works to improve women’s reproductive health, across the life course” and “develop indicators relating to women’s health experience and impact on their work.” The Government has also recently sought views to help inform the development of a Women’s Health Strategy. 

This inquiry is no longer accepting evidence

The deadline for submissions was Friday 17 September 2021.

Reports, special reports and government responses

View all reports and responses
First Report - Menopause and the Workplace
Inquiry Menopause and the workplace
Committees Women and Equalities Committee
HC 91
Report
Fourth special report - Menopause and the workplace survey results
Inquiry Menopause and the workplace
Committees Women and Equalities Committee
HC 1157
Special Report

Oral evidence transcripts

View all oral evidence transcripts
16 March 2022
Inquiry Menopause and the workplace
Witnesses Department of Health and Social Care, Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, and Department of Health and Social Care
Committees Women and Equalities Committee
Oral Evidence
9 February 2022
Inquiry Menopause and the workplace
Witnesses Lynda Bailey (Co Founder and Director, Talking Menopause and former Inspector at West Midlands Police), First Direct, and Sharon Ollivier (Senior Training and Development Partner at South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust)
Committees Women and Equalities Committee
Oral Evidence
9 February 2022
Inquiry Menopause and the workplace
Witnesses Henpicked - Menopause in the Workplace, Trade Union Congress, and Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development
Committees Women and Equalities Committee
Oral Evidence
MEW0092 - Menopause and the workplace
Witnesses Employment Lawyers Association
Committees Women and Equalities Committee
Written Evidence
MEW0093 - Menopause and the workplace
Witnesses Discrimination Law Association
Committees Women and Equalities Committee
Written Evidence
MEW0069 - Menopause and the workplace
Witnesses International Menopause Work Consortium
Committees Women and Equalities Committee
Written Evidence

Contact us

We cannot help you with an individual problem or specific complaint.

  • Email: womeqcom@parliament.uk
  • Phone: (General enquiries) 020 7219 4452 / (Media enquiries) 020 7219 1725
  • Address: Committee Office, House of Commons, Palace of Westminster, SW1A 0AA