A trailblazing campaign to tackle the stigma of the menopause in the workplace is being stepped up with an event for men to discuss about the issue.
The Dorset Chamber organised session – ‘Gentlemen, Let’s Talk about the Menopause’ – is believed to be the first of its kind in the UK.
Sometimes an uncomfortable issue for discussion, this event is being held on Thursday September 30 purely for men, providing a comfortable environment.
Dorset Chamber chief executive Ian Girling has been spearheading the chamber’s campaign and sits on an All-Party Parliamentary Group at Westminster conducting an enquiry into issues around the menopause.
He said: “Our launch event for the campaign was a tremendous success but it was noticeable that very few men attended.
“Many men say that it is an uncomfortable or embarrassing subject to bring up in the workplace but in reality it is a huge issue that affects so many of our female colleagues.
“Our latest event is exclusively for men and offers a chance to gain a better understanding of the menopause, bring the issue into the open and offer practical advice on how we can provide support.”
Ian added: “We believe this to be the first event of its kind in the country and I would encourage men to sign up.
“Many firms are losing skilled and valuable employees because of this issue. Addressing it is the right thing for men to do both from a business perspective and personally to help their female colleagues at what can be a very challenging time.
“It is also worth noting that references to the menopause in cases of unfair dismissal or direct discrimination at employment tribunals have increased significantly over the last four years, with five tribunals in the UK that made reference to a claimant’s menopause, rising to six in 2019, 16 in 2020 and 10 in the first six months of 2021.”
The event will include presentations by menopause consultant Nicola Green and Edward O’Brien from Lester Aldridge, who will talk about employers’ responsibilities.
Dorset Chamber team member Theresa Higgins will provide an insight into the impact of the menopause on her wellbeing.
At a recent Dorset Chamber event, more than 70 per cent of women said that the menopause had affected them at work and more than 80 per cent felt they could not discuss it with managers.
Gentlemen, Let’s Talk about the Menopause is from 9.30am to 10.45am on Thursday September 30.
For more details visit https://dorsetchamber.co.uk/event/gentlemen-lets-talk-about-the-menopause/.
Women aged 45 to 55 make up the largest single demographic in the workplace
Approximately 13 million women in the UK are peri or post-menopausal
More than 60% of women experience symptoms resulting in behaviour changes
One in four women will experience debilitating symptoms
Two-thirds of women say there is a lack of support and understanding