UNION

Debilitating’ menopause symptoms affecting 70% of women must be addressed by employers

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11 Jun 2019
Press Office

Press Office

Bosses must have robust policies in place to support women suffering from the debilitating effects of the menopause, GMB congress has said.

A motion passed by GMB’s Annual congress today calls on employers to change their policies and procedures to include the menopause and protect members in the workplace.

Whilst most employers still do not have policies to support workers experiencing the menopause, members can face disciplinary action as a result of triggering sickness absence policies, through no fault of their own.

Nell Andrew, GMB National Equality and Inclusion Officer

The average age of menopause is 51 but can affect women in their 30s and 40s.

Around seven in ten women of menopausal age are in work in the UK.

Nell Andrew, GMB National Equality and Inclusion Officer, said:

“Our members have spoken out about the number of problems women and trans men experiencing the menopause face in the workplace - including hot flushes, irregular heavy periods, anxiety and memory issues, sleep problems and joint and muscle pain - it's often not an easy transition.

“Whilst most employers still do not have policies to support workers experiencing the menopause, members can face disciplinary action as a result of triggering sickness absence policies, through no fault of their own.

“GMB is committed to tackling this important issue that impacts at least 50% of the workforce.”

Sarah James, National Equality Forum Women’s Lead, said:

“With women working longer, it is key that the menopause is taken as a serious workplace issue.

“Once again GMB are ensuring equality asks are always at the forefront of what we do.”

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