International Women’s Day – March 8th

International Women's Day

We are delighted to be celebrating International Women’s Day and what better way than to profile some of the exciting sessions featured during Health and Wellbeing at Work Week on women in the workplace. A recent Women and Equalities Commission report highlighted the disproportionate effect the pandemic has had on female workers. Companies will need to ensure this is high on their recovery agenda and offer greater flexibility and compassion moving forward. There also needs to be increased awareness around women’s health conditions and a better understanding of your legal responsibilities as an employer.

Professor Dame Carol Black DBE on Women, Work and the Pandemic

Dame Carol looks at how the pandemic has worsened an already damaged labour market situation for women, with many falling out of work altogether. There is no doubt that this will have a detrimental affect on their mental health and wellbeing. Employers will need to act now to enable their managers to provide customised support and offer greater work flexibility.

Marina Bolton and Bernice Allport on Menopause Awareness in the Civil Service

The Civil Service’s HR Director Marina Bolton and its Chair of the Menopause CS Network Bernice Allport discuss how they have embedded a culture of menopause awareness within the Civil Service. Helping colleagues who may be experiencing crippling menopausal symptoms to feel included, valued, heard and supported is at the heart of their work, and this has been even more important during the pandemic – some women have not wanted to bother their GP whilst for others, their symptoms such as anxiety have been exacerbated. They talk about some of their recent innovations including a virtual Menopause Festival.

Sophie Sulehria on Understanding the Human Experience of IVF

Journalist Sophie Sulehria discusses the human experience of undergoing IVF. After seven courses of treatment, her story is an emotional one. She feels that she would not have been able to manage the ordeal without the support of her employers and partner. She talks about the effect on her physical and emotional wellbeing and offers some valuable and practical advice for employers on how best to support employees as well as their partners throughout the process.

Steve Hails on Removing Gender Based Barriers at Tideway

Director of Business Services and HSW at Tideway, Steve Hails, shares the Company’s approach to understanding and addressing the gender-based barriers to employment on a large infrastructure project. He discusses some of the challenges and opportunities it presented, success stories, leadership commitment, innovative solutions, employee engagement and how Tideway is now able to influence a wider industry in recognising the social return on investment of their approach.

Carrie-Anne Randall on What Employers Need to Know About Endometriosis

Endometriosis affects around 1.5 million women in the UK who are of child bearing age and it is a complex, reoccurring and extremely debilitating condition causing chronic pain and fatigue, among other symptoms. Women who suffer with the condition find that it affects many aspects of their life including work. Understanding the experience from a personal perspective, employment lawyer Carrie-Anne Randall offers advice to employers on how to best support employees with endometriosis and measures to take to avoid workplace discrimination.

Paula Rome on the Legal Aspects of Managing Employees During the Menopause

Employment Lawyer Paula Rome offers some practical advice around how best to manage employees going through the Menopause. Taking a look at the symptoms that will undoubtedly affect performance, she asks whether or not this constitutes a disability and the steps employers can take to not only offer support but to protect themselves in order to avoid the pitfalls.

Helen Corden With an Update on the Gender Pay Gap

Pinsent Mason’s Helen Corden provides an update on the current landscape in relation to pay gap reporting. She looks at how far we have come since gender pay gap reporting was introduced and what still remains to be done. She also discusses how COVID-19 has impacted on the progress and the potential fall out this might have.

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