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National conference to focus on menopause policy in the workplace

Experts from our University are to showcase menopause policies in the workplace at a national conference.

The University of Leicester is the first University in the UK with a workplace menopause policy. Launched in November 2017 the University is tackling the taboo of menopause with a Let’s Talk Menopause initiative, supported with a workplace policy to enable employees to have confident conversations around menopause.

On Tuesday 23 January, Leicester academics will be speaking at the second annual Menopause in the Workplace conference in Nottingham, showcasing and sharing what the policy and results are so far.

The conference is organised by Henpicked.net which has been passionate about raising awareness around menopause and its impacts on workplaces. The founder, Deborah Garlick, has been speaking on BBC Woman’s Hour this week as part of their menopause focus.

Academics Professor Jo Brewis and Dr Andrea Davies from our School of Business and Dr Vanessa Beck (now at the University of Bristol) will be speaking at the conference. The menopause policy at the University was informed by their recent government report entitled ‘The effects of menopause transition on women’s economic participation in the UK , and they will be sharing an overview of the report’s main findings as well as showcasing the policy itself.

Jo Brewis, from our School of Business, says: “Taking menopause seriously is the right thing to do for all UK employers. Every woman will experience it differently so there is no one-size-fits-all solution. Not all women will want to talk about it at work and that is fine. The main thing they need is understanding and flexibility and an awareness that the support is there if needed.”

Andrea Davies, from our School of Business, added: “At the University of Leicester we want everyone to be able to talk about menopause openly and without embarrassment. This is not an issue solely for women, men should be aware too so that they can support colleagues, students, friends and family. We want women with menopause symptoms to feel confident to discuss it and ask for support, if it is needed, so that they can continue to be successful in their roles and enjoy the right life-work balance.”

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