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Employment tribunals involving menopause have increased by 44%

The Menopause Experts Group conducted research looking into how women are treated in the workplace when going through menopause and found that ‘Menopause’ was mentioned 207 times in tribunals in 2021, up 75% from the 118 mentions in 2020. There were 23 employment tribunals citing menopause in 2021 — up 44% from the 16 cases in the previous year. 16 tribunal cases cited disability discrimination in 2021, with ten claiming sex discrimination, and 14 claiming unfair dismissal.

The Menopause Experts Group conducted research looking into how women are treated in the workplace when going through menopause and found that ‘Menopause’ was mentioned 207 times in tribunals in 2021, up 75% from the 118 mentions in 2020. There were 23 employment tribunals citing menopause in 2021 — up 44% from the 16 cases in the previous year. 16 tribunal cases cited disability discrimination in 2021, with ten claiming sex discrimination, and 14 claiming unfair dismissal.

One claimant who had told her employer she was suffering hot flushes due to menopause was reprimanded for undoing her top button when experiencing a hot flush and was told to do it up. Two-fifths of menopause employment tribunals were resolved within a month of the hearing, but three cases took more than two years.

Too many employers without robust menopause policies are risking legal action from workers, warns Dee Murray, CEO of Menopause Experts Group. This simply must change to protect women and prevent legal action that can be costly both financially and in terms of reputation.

The Menopause Experts Group recommends employers offer their employees training about the symptoms, signs, and side effects of menopause. They also suggest nominating menopause champions in the workplace as volunteers, just as they would with mental health, women can then feel safe and secure in the knowledge that someone will have a listening ear and perhaps can signpost them.

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