Leicester District
National Education Union

Jessica Edmonds, Leicester NEU Assistant Secretary, 23rd January 2019

Pause for menopause: it's time we all talked about it

Ladies and gents - it's time to be open about the effect that menopause can have in the workplace. People experiencing menopause may have problems sleeping, loss of concentration, physical discomfort, as well as those hot flushes (power surges!). These can all affect someone's ability to do their job, and with symptoms lasting an average of four years, perhaps it's something to give thought to, especially where an employee would fall under the scope of the Equality Act 2010. For school leaders, it's a tricky topic to broach. Therefore, if you are experiencing menopause and would like support, it's a good idea to raise that with your leadership. If they don't know, they can't help you, and any problems you might be experiencing at work might become more difficult to cope with.

Conversations about menopause should be handled as confidentially and sensitively as any other medical condition, with appropriate support measures being considered and put in place by managers to support employees. Helping an employee may reduce stress, and therefore make them happier at work. The Health and Wellbeing Passport (available on the Schools' ExtraNet) could also be used.

Around 50% of the population experience menopause, and the rest of the population arguably are affected by it, so don't be shy! If we all talk about menopause, its symptoms and its effects, we normalise it.

If you feel like you could use some support, why don't you:

• Read the menopause guidance that's available on the ExtraNet;

• Talk to your line manager or another manager within your school;

• Talk to a local trade union officer (0116 255 5311);

• Contact AMICA confidential counselling: (0116) 254 4388 from 8.30 am to 8.30pm, 365 days a year.


Related articles

Health & Safety Matters - Forty Education Workers Die Because of Work! (23rd January 2019)
Health & Safety Matters: Asbestos in Bunsen Burner Wire Gauzes (23rd September 2018)
Health & Safety Matters - Stress & Mental Health, Swimming (6th June 2018)
Health & Safety Matters - Equalities Act, Stress, Fire Sprinklers, Air Pollution (1st December 2017)
Health & Safety Matters: Mobile Classrooms, Risk Assessments (5th October 2017)
Health & Safety Matters: New Year - Same Old Problems! (1st September 2017)
Falling For the Job? (1st July 2017)
Health & Safety Adviser - 2017 Annual Report (7th March 2017)
Academies Are Bad For Your Health (8th November 2016)
Health & Safety Matters - training and other news (5th October 2016)
Health & Safety Matters - Display Screen Equipment, Manual Handling, Safety in Swimming Lessons (25th May 2016)
Health & safety matters - best practice back-saving tips for Primary Teachers (12th February 2016)
Health & Safety Matters - the minefield of technology (15th January 2016)
Health & Safety Matters - heating systems, winter, TU Reform Bill, asbestos in crayons (13th November 2015)
Health & Safety Matters - Stress - and Sun (9th May 2015)
Health & Safety Matters (30th January 2015)
H&S Reps Training (22nd September 2014)
Health & Safety Matters - Stress, Industrial Action, Asbestos (22nd September 2014)
Health & Safety Matters - Pupils with medical conditions, asbestos management, gas masks and military helmets, European H&S Week (27th June 2014)
Health & Safety Matters - High temperatures, training, regional conference (30th May 2014)
Health and Safety Matters - asbestos, mental health, medicines (17th February 2014)
Health and Safety Matters - risk assessments, asbestos, Wear Something Light, winter weather, school reps (9th December 2013)
Health and Safety Matters - Asbestos, Temperatures, Training (7th October 2013)
Health and Safety Matters: Beating the No Compensation Culture (4th September 2013)
Health and Safety Matters - asbestos, school reps (3rd June 2013)
Health & Safety Matters - E-Safety, Stress Audits (14th January 2013)
Wintery problems (12th November 2012)
Health and Safety Matters: H&S Inspections, Updates, Training (8th October 2012)
Thalassaemia and Sickle Cell Disorder (4th September 2011)
Health and Safety Matters: Eyesight, Reps, Chairs, Viruses and Training (2nd February 2011)
Asbestos Exposure (9th September 2009)
Eyesight Tests (9th September 2009)
Health & Safety Matters: Working at Height, Training, Accident Reporting (13th February 2009)
Extreme Teachers (13th February 2009)
Safety Committees & Representatives (3rd December 2008)
Crazy about work (3rd December 2007)
Building Work (8th October 2007)
Interactive Whiteboards (8th October 2007)
Is Your School Safe? (5th March 2007)
Mobile Phones (8th May 2006)
Calling Health and Safety Reps (3rd April 2006)
New Health and Safety Advisor (7th November 2005)