EHRC publishes menopause guidance for employers

James Williams

New guidance on menopause in the workplace, setting out employer’s legal obligations under the Equality Act 2010, was issued today by the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC).

Many women report experiencing negative impacts of menopausal symptoms in the workplace, with some even feeling compelled to leave their jobs as a result.

Research shows that one in ten women surveyed who have worked during the menopause have left their jobs due to symptoms, while two thirds of working women between the ages of 40 and 60 with experience of menopausal symptoms said they have had a mostly negative impact on them at work. However, very few workers request workplace adjustments during this time, often citing concerns about potential reactions.

As the number of women experiencing menopause while in employment increases, it is essential that employers know how to support workers experiencing menopause symptoms. Not only does this ensure they meet their legal responsibilities, but also that women in this group are able to continue to contribute to the workplace and benefit from work.

The guidance contains three videos:

  1. How a worker experiencing menopause symptoms may be protected under the Equality Act 2010;
  2. Workplace adjustments such as:
  • Changes to the physical work environment, such as room temperature and ventilation, providing rest areas and cooling systems, and relaxing uniform policies.
  • Promoting flexibility, such as allowing working from home, changing shift patterns, and varying start and finish times.
  • Recording menopause-related absence separately from other absence due to the potential discrimination risks of taking disciplinary action for such absence, and not using language that ridicules a worker’s menopause symptoms due to the risk of harassment.
  1. Open conversations about the menopause, involving all workers and not just management. This will encourage an open culture where workers feel able to talk about their symptoms and request workplace adjustments. Look at training and adopting a menopause policy which is communicated to staff.

Menopause in the workplace: Guidance for employers | EHRC (
Regulator provides advice for employers on menopause and the Equality Act | EHRC (

James Williams – Solicitor

James Williams

I am a qualified Employment Law and HR Solicitor. I specialise in acting for schools and advise on all aspects of employment law and HR including attending employee meetings, advising senior leaders, conducting redundancy consultations, drafting contracts of employment, advising on policies and procedures and negotiating settlement agreements.