24 Jan 2023

Chair of the Women and Equalities Committee “disappointed” at government decision to rejecting menopause leave

Social Affairs Editor and Presenter

The government has rejected calls to change the law to help women suffering debilitating symptoms of the menopause.

In July last year, the Women and Equalities Committee proposed that there should be a trial of menopause leave in England and that the condition should become a “protected characteristic” under the Equalities Act, putting it on a par with sex, age, disability and race. Today the government rejected both ideas.  Menopause leave, it said, could be “counter-productive” to the ambition to “support menopausal women to remain in the workplace” and that making menopause a “protected characteristic” could cause”unintended consequences”  including “discrimination risks towards men suffering from long-term medical conditions”.

Tory MP Caroline Nokes is the chair of the Women and Equalities Select Committee which produced the report.