Menopause leave trial rejected by Ministers
The Government has rejected calls for a large scale pilot of menopause leave, in a move described as a "missed opportunity" by a Commons committee. Ministers have also resisted a recommendation from the Commons Women and Equalities Committee to make menopause a "protected characteristic" under the Equalities Act.
The recommendations formed a key plank of a report by the cross-party committee in July last year focusing on menopause and the workplace, but in a response published on Tuesday the Government rejected the two suggestions.
In a letter to health minister Maria Caulfield, the Conservative MP said she was disappointed that "very little new work has been committed to by the Government"
But the Government, in rejecting the recommendation, suggested that such an approach might not be the best solution to support women. It also warns of unintentionally creating "discrimination risks towards men suffering from long-term medical conditions, or eroding existing protections".
The Government also said that the proposal for a pilot scheme on menopause leave was not seen as "necessary" and could turn out to be "counterproductive".
"We are focusing our efforts on disseminating best practice and encouraging employers to implement workplace menopause policies and other forms of support such as flexible working, which can play a vital role in supporting people to remain in work," the Government said.