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Menopause rights in the workplace

MPs are calling for greater rights and protection for working women going through the menopause.  This comes in response to the Women and Equalities Commission reporting that a lack of support for menopausal women in the UK is pushing them out of work and that this is no longer tenable, given that 51% of the population will experience the menopause – including some trans men and people who are non-binary.  The ultimate protection, which MPs are seeking, is for menopause to become a protected characteristic under the Equality Act, just like pregnancy.  They are also pushing for menopause leave to be piloted at a large public sector employer.  It is between the ages of 45 and 55 that women are most likely to go through the menopause.  Symptoms can last, on average, for four years, although one in ten women can experience symptoms for up to 12 years.  Surveys show that women who experience at least one problematic menopausal symptom are 43% more likely to leave their jobs by the age of 55.  Symptoms of the menopause can include:

✧ sleep, memory and concentration problems

✧ hot flushes

✧ anxiety

✧ depression

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