Statement of purpose
This policy outlines the approach Successful Mums will take when promoting and supporting the health and wellbeing of female staff and learners.
The policy applies to all staff at Successful Mums including contractors.
Objectives of the policy
- To outline the approach Successful Mums will take when promoting women’s health and wellbeing
- To outline the support available from Successful Mums for both staff and learners
- To encourage a supportive and empathetic culture so that female staff can manage a healthy work life balance
- To reduce sickness absence due to women’s health symptoms and retain valued staff in the workplace.
- To provide guidance for staff and learners on how to use this policy
- To provide guidance on how line managers should handle women’s health and wellbeing issues
- To detail the organisations that can be used for signposting
Women’s health and wellbeing covers a range of different areas including pregnancy, new mothers and the menopause.
Pregnancy is the period of time a fetus develops inside a woman’s womb and will involve a number of physical, emotional and mental changes. For the purpose of this policy, pregnancy also includes women who are in the process of IVF treatments.
New mothers are women who have given birth within the last year and includes whose babies may not have survived.
Menopause is a normal part of every woman’s life and generally occurs in the forties and early fifties, when a woman stops menstruating. For many women symptoms last about four years, but in some cases can last longer – up to 12 years. Part of the process includes what is termed the ‘perimenopause’ when a woman’s body is starting to change in the build up to the menopause. The perimenopause usually starts in the mid-forties and lasts for several years. The perimenopause is not the same as an early menopause.
This policy recognises that these different areas of women’s health and wellbeing are equality and occupational health and safety issues and that women may need appropriate flexibility, support and adjustments before, during and after the time of change.
This policy takes account of:
- The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974
- The Equality Act 2010
Successful Mums was established to support women returners after a career break, which makes women’s health and wellbeing central to its mission and ethos. The following points outline the approach Successful Mums takes:
- To offer a range of support to both learners and staff so that work and learning are manageable and any symptoms are not made worst
- To develop a culture of understanding and openness around women’s health and wellbeing issues to ensure women can ask for support and speak confidently about these issues without embarrassment
- To enforce a code of conduct that ensures women are treated in confidence with dignity and respect during these times
- To deliver the L1 Award in Mental Health within all L1 courses offered
- To include wellbeing as part of the Induction for all staff earners
- To include relevant women’s health and wellbeing topics within social media posts
- To provide information and signposting for relevant agencies
The Support Available
Successful Mums can offer a range of support to both staff and learners with issues concerning women’s health and wellbeing so that the individual feels like work and learning are manageable and a work life balance can still be achieved. Individuals will be treated on a case by case basis, but the types of support are listed below:
- Flexible work arrangements
- Facilities or areas for keeping cool
- Adjustments to workplace procedures and processes
- Prohibiting the need for extensive travel or manual handling
- Feminine hygiene products available at the office and training centers
- Cover available for staff that may need to use the toilets during training sessions
- Cover available for medical appointments
- Water and refreshments available at the office and training centers
- 121 and remote support from trainers or managers
- Deadline and task reminders from trainers and managers
- Extended deadlines
- Information and signposting to relevant agencies
- This list is not exhaustive
Staff and Learners
It is recognised that everyone who works at Successful Mums has a role to play in ensuring a comfortable working environment for all staff, including women experiencing health issues.
All staff are responsible for:
- taking responsibility for looking after their health
- being open and honest in conversations with managers
- contributing to a respectful and healthy working environment
- being willing to help and support their colleagues
- accepting and supporting any necessary adjustments their colleagues request or are receiving as a result of their symptoms.
The most important and valuable thing a manager can do is listen and, wherever possible, respond sympathetically to any requests for adjustments at work. All line managers will:
- familiarise themselves with this policy
- be aware of the potential impact of women’s health on performance; if someone’s performance suddenly dips, consideration will be given as to whether their health may be playing a part in this.
- provide a safe place to allow the member of staff to speak openly and honestly
- be ready and willing to listen and have open discussions about women’s health, appreciating the personal nature of the conversation, and treating the discussion sensitively and confidentially and allowing adequate time for the discussion
- record adjustments agreed, and actions to be implemented in writing
- ensure ongoing dialogue via a follow-up meeting
- ensure that all agreed adjustments are adhered to and reviewed as regularly as necessary.
Organisations for Signposting
There are a number of different agencies that can be used for signposting, the following is a list of examples:
- www.wellbeingofwomen.org.uk/ – women’s health research charity
- Age UK – for support with the menopause
- Best Beginnings – charity to support pregnant women and new mums
- Maternity Action – to address inequalities of pregnant women, new mothers and their families
- NCT – UK’s leading charity for parents
- Forward UK – for eliminating gender-based violence against African girls and women
- www.RCOG.org.uk – to improve healthcare for women
- Positively UK – for women living with HIV
- www.Menopausesupport.co.uk – for support with the menopause
Monitoring and Review of the Policy
Successful Mums have the right to change this policy at their discretion if it meets the needs of the business. Staff will be notified of any changes. In addition, Successful Mums will review its policies and procedures to ensure that they comply with any relevant legislation, government policies or to remedy any deficiencies or weaknesses.