NI Council Adopts Menopause Policy

A Northern Ireland council has agreed to adopt a menopause policy to support women in the workplace.

Research shows that the majority of women are unwilling to discuss any menopause related health problems with their employer or request any adjustments they may require.

Derry City and Strabane District Council has become the first local authority to adopt policy on the matter that sets out guidelines for employees and managers on providing the right support to manage menopausal symptoms at work.

The policy was developed in consultation with recognised trade unions.

Lead HR Officer Paula Donnelly said it is evidence of the council's commitment to providing an inclusive and supportive working environment for all employees.
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Ms Donnelly expressed hope that the policy will foster an environment in which colleagues can openly and comfortably instigate conversations, or engage in discussions about menopause. It aims to ensure everyone understands what menopause is, can confidently have good conversations, and are clear on the council's policy and practices, supported by Human Resources and Occupational Health.

Ms Donnelly added that council is committed to educating and informing managers about the potential symptoms of menopause, and how they can support women at work and ensuring that women suffering with menopause symptoms feel confident to discuss it and ask for support from a manager or HR who may recommend a referral to Occupational Health. It is also hoped the new policy will reduce absenteeism due to menopausal symptoms.

The proposal will go before full council later this month to be ratified.


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