House of Commons to become ‘menopause friendly’ employer
The House of Commons is set to become a ‘menopause friendly’ employer after Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle signed up to a pledge committing to the introduction of new workplace policies. Carolyn Harris, the Labour MP who brought forward the Menopause Bill last year and successfully fought to reduce the cost of hormone replacement therapy prescriptions, praised the changes.
Adjustments promised include flexible working, time off for related appointments, breathable uniforms, well-ventilated rooms, access to fans, training for managers and menopause awareness events.
Research commissioned by childcare service Koru Kids found that more than one million British women feel under pressure to quit their jobs due to menopause symptoms.
“I value my female colleagues and staff, and I do not want them avoiding promotion or leaving Parliament because of the symptoms they are experiencing,” Sir Lindsay said.
“I also want to break the taboo – just as we did with mental health issues – and get everyone in our parliamentary village talking about the menopause and offering support for those going through it.”
The signing of the pledge in the Speaker’s
House in Parliament on 13 June was attended by women’s health expert Professor Dame Lesley
Regan and TV presenters Mariella Frostrup, Penny Lancaster, Liz Earle and Lisa Snowdon.
The Speaker also plans to encourage all MPs to sign the Wellbeing of Women Menopause
Workplace Pledge to cover staff in their parliamentary and constituency offices.