73% unable to talk about menopause symptoms at work

menopauseNew data has revealed that nearly three-quarters of women (73%) experiencing menopause do not feel able to talk openly about their symptoms with colleagues, with more than one million feeling pressure to quit their jobs due to symptoms.

Commissioned by childcare service Koru Kids, the survey of 2,000 women currently experiencing menopause symptoms across the UK highlighted that a lack of support is having a direct impact on women’s decisions to leave the workplace.

One-quarter (24%) who are experiencing menopause symptoms are unhappy in their jobs because of a lack of support, with 63% noting that their place of work has not introduced a policy to make things easier for anyone with the condition.

70% of women experiencing menopause who needed to take time off as a result of their symptoms did not tell their employer the real reason they needed to do so.

The report also highlighted that many women without support are under pressure to leave the workforce this year. Of those looking to leave their job, the pressures put on them (42%), not receiving the flexible working they need to manage their symptoms (39%) and lack of understanding from management of what they are experiencing (39%) are the top reasons as to why they are considering it.

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Rachel Carrell, founder of Koru Kids, commented that the menopause ranks second in the list of what has impacted women’s careers to date, behind having children.

“Women should never be pushed out of the workplace because of their biology. Menopause is a natural part of women’s life course, and shouldn’t mean the end of their career. As a society, we need to support older women with flexible working and health support so they don’t fall out of the workplace needlessly. I’d love to see menopausal women able to press play on their careers again,” she said.