UK government unwilling to create model menopause policies

British government has also rejected the recommendation to introduce specific menopause leave policy or protect menopause under the Equality Act 2010


The Women and Equalities Committee had made certain recommendations in its report most of which have been rejected by the British government. The recommendations included appointment of a menopause employment champion, creation of model menopause policies, introduction of a specific menopause leave policy and protection of menopause under the Equality Act 2010,

However, the British government is not willing to implement these suggestions as it feels that this may lead to discrimination in various forms. After all, men also grapple with medical issues, some of which are long term.

It is the UK government’s argument that menopause has been covered by the three characteristics of age, sex and disability discrimination that are already protected under the Equality Act 2010.

However, the government does agree that employers could do with some guidelines pertaining to ways in which they can support employees going through menopause by way of adjustments if menopause results in disability under the Equality Act 2010.

Of course, the government’s stand has received criticism for its unwillingness to protect women professionals / workers.

Meanwhile, political leaders in Britain have indicated that introduction of a specific menopause leave policy in public-sector organisations may actually prove to be pointless and go against the government’s very strategy. They feel that enough is being done as per the Women’s Health Strategy of 2022, to lend support to menopausal women so they are not forced to quit the workplace. As per this strategy, organisations are allowed to bring into effect workplace menopause policies and provide support in ways they deem fit so that menopausal women can continue to work without worries.

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