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  • Writer's pictureClaire Watt

Newsletter June 2024 : Everything you need to know about menopause in the workplace


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Experiencing menopause at work can be challenging for a number of reasons, and the physiological and psychological symptoms of menopause can vary greatly from person to person.

While menopause isn’t explicitly a protected characteristic under the Equality Act 2020, a recent landmark employment tribunal case (Mrs M Lynskey v Direct Line Insurance) found that menopause symptoms can, in fact, be considered a disability if they have a long-term and substantial impact on a woman’s ability to carry out normal day-to- day activities.

A key takeaway from the case is that it may be possible to discriminate against employees experiencing menopause symptoms, by refusing to make reasonable adjustments and by penalising them for poor performance.

The ET ruled that the employer failed to make reasonable adjustments for Mrs Lynskey’s menopausal symptoms – namely: low mood, anxiety, mood swings, poor self-esteem and impact on memory and concentration - and that these symptoms were legally classed as a disability. This led to unfavourable treatment and her resignation.

Therefore, it is crucial to build an inclusive culture that encourages open discussion about the menopause, along with a supportive environment both in the office and when working at home. Having a menopause policy that educates, informs and helps people show understanding to their colleagues, without awkwardness or embarrassment, is a great place to start.


Our latest guide covers everything you need to know about these changes.

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FINAL - HR Newsletter - June 2024
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