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Women in work need greater menopause rights, say group of MPs

A new report makes recommendations to improve menopause support in the workplace, after it found that many women are quitting their jobs


We welcome the recommendations put forward by the Women and Equalities Committee report into the menopause. For too long, women have quit their jobs, reduced their hours and passed up promotions due to lack of support in the workplace.

This has serious implications for the health and wellbeing of women, the economy and wider society. It contributes to the gender pay gap, the pension gap, and poor representation of women, while denying businesses and organisations of the vital contributions that women make.

The menopause can have an impact on many women and in different ways. There needs to be greater awareness of menopause in the workplace, including the range of symptoms that can be experienced, to make sure women feel able to seek help and for line managers to know how best to support their colleagues.

As our Menopause Workplace Pledge campaign has shown, even simple measures can be effective – such as introducing menopause policies, offering flexible working and time off for appointments, and providing guidance for managers.

The importance of enabling an open and positive culture in the workplace, including normalising conversations without fear, shame or embarrassment, should not be underestimated as stigma and taboo around the menopause still persist.

Many women with menopause symptoms still struggle to access good evidence-based information, and healthcare services, whether a GP or menopause specialist, leading to delays in getting a diagnosis and appropriate treatment. It is good to see this report making recommendations on how to address these ongoing issues.

As the report states, there is still a long way to go to make sure every woman is offered support and the Government must not lose momentum, especially after the publication of the first Women’s Health Strategy.

The key recommendations, such as appointing a Menopause Ambassador, introducing mandated menopause policies, and reducing prescription charges, would be a step in the right direction.

Women have suffered for far too long and it is crucial that the right information, treatment, care and support are offered to those who may need it and whenever they may need it.

Read the report here. Wellbeing for Women, in collaboration with Hello! Magazine and Bupa, is calling on employers to sign the Menopause Workplace Pledge and support their colleagues going through the menopause.

Find out more about the campaign and how you can get involved.

On Sky News, Caroline Nokes MP, Chair of the Women and Equalities Committee, outlines what support is needed for women and mentions our Menopause Workplace Pledge campaign.