The menopause takes place over several years and is a major stage in a person’s life. It is recognised that it can have a substantial impact on an employee’s performance in the workplace and employers are becoming more aware of the need and legal obligation to support those experiencing it.
The government have this month, published its response to an independent report that was published back in 2021 which examines the menopause in the workplace. The government sets out its response to each recommendation included in the report, and taking the recommendations regarding employment, the responses include:
Changes to the Equality Act
The government does not believe changes to the Equality Act 2010 are needed on the basis that there are already several avenues available to employees to raise a claim in regards to treatment in connection with the menopause. Sex, age and disability are all protected characteristics which can provide protection against unfair treatment to those going through the menopause
The government recognises the importance of employee assistance programmes for offering support to employees regarding their mental health and wellbeing, especially during the menopause. The government encourages employers to ensure that the menopause forms part of an EAP service.
For those small businesses that may not be able to introduce an EAP, the government will explore options for additional support within the workplace via the Health and Wellbeing fund
You can read the full response here.
We currently have a Menopause policy available for download from our HR Document Shop. This is a useful policy to assist with an employee that is currently going through the menopause. You can download your menopause policy here.