Tuesday, 22 March 2016
Workplace discrimination on the rise?
Figures suggest pregnancy discrimination is on the rise as MPs demand action against the gender pay gap
The news about women in the workplace today left us gritting our teeth and crossing our fingers in equal measure.
New figures suggest more pregnant women and new mums are experiencing workplace discrimination. At the same time MPs are demanding more be done about the ‘motherhood penalty’ leaving women being paid less than men.
A report by the Women and Equalities Select Committee has said policies are needed to tackle issues like women’s disproportionate responsibility for childcare and low part-time wages.
It suggested the introduction of three months of well-paid leave for dads and second parents to enable parents to share care more equally, and more support to help women back into work after having children.
Another report on pregnancy discrimination, which is illegal, found one in five mums said they have experienced harassment of negative comments related to pregnancy or flexible working hours.
However, the Equality and Human Rights Commission, which commissioned the report, has recommended preventing employers from asking about a woman’s intention to have children.
It has also suggested the government look at lowering employment tribunal fees and explore ways to help smaller employers provide enhanced pay and cover for maternity leave.