The once-taboo topic of menopause is gaining recognition for its significant impact on both an employee’s personal and professional life. Menopausal symptoms, ranging from hot flushes to reduced concentration, can vary, prompting the need for employers to foster understanding and support. At Barrett & Co Solicitors in Reading, we emphasise the importance of acknowledging and addressing the challenges posed by menopause in the workplace.
Understanding the Challenges
Employers and managers play a crucial role in understanding the physical, emotional, and psychological challenges associated with menopause. Barrett & Co provides training and resources to raise awareness among employers, fostering an environment where open conversations about menopause are encouraged.
Legal Obligations: Health and Safety Law
Under UK health and safety law, employers have a legal duty to ensure the well-being of their employees. This includes conducting risk assessments related to menopause. Our legal team at Barrett & Co can assist in assessing various factors, such as workplace temperature, uniform suitability, rest facilities, toilet accessibility, and the availability of drinking water.
Additional Menopause Support in The Workplace
Barrett & Co Solicitors offers guidance on additional support options, including:
Flexible Working Requests: Employees have the statutory right to request flexible working arrangements. Barrett & Co emphasizes the importance of flexible working to manage menopausal symptoms effectively, promoting inclusivity and work-life balance.
Discrimination Law: While the Equality Act 2010 does not explicitly cover menopause, the Act prohibits discrimination on grounds such as sex and age. Our legal experts can provide guidance on potential age and sex discrimination claims related to menopausal symptoms.
Reasonable Adjustments: Employers are obligated to make reasonable adjustments to support employees experiencing menopause as a potential disability. Barrett & Co can advise on adjustments, including flexible work arrangements and temperature control in the workplace.
Unfair Dismissal and Constructive Unfair Dismissal Claims
In cases of unfair dismissal related to menopausal symptoms, employees may have valid claims if employers fail to consider the impact on issues like attendance or performance. Constructive dismissal, arising from a lack of support for menopausal symptoms, is also a concern addressed by our legal team.
Seeking Legal Advice
Barrett & Co Solicitors understands that addressing menopause in the workplace is essential for creating a supportive and diverse environment. In complex cases, seeking legal advice ensures compliance with the law. Employers and employees can rely on our Employment Law team for reliable and actionable advice. If you have questions or concerns related to menopause in the workplace, please contact us through the form on our Employment Law page or call us at 0118 958 9711. Your rights matter, and we are here to help.