It’s 2018, and times have really changed for the better… mostly.
Unfortunately, gender inequality is still a predominant issue in the workplace, in particular when it comes to the birds and the bees.
What is the fundamental difference between a man and woman (no, we’re not talking genitalia here…)?
Women get pregnant, carry a baby, deal with the health repercussions, give birth, deal with the next lot of health repercussions, and our boobies make milk.
It is a fact of life that women get pregnant pretty often – it’s nature – and without us getting pregnant, society wouldn’t have a future generation of workers, tax payers, law makers, so on and so forth. However, shockingly, employers are still contradicting the law with sneaky behaviour and discriminating against female staff in the workplace when they become pregnant, after they give birth, and sometimes even before they’ve even got the job despite being childless at that current time.
To help combat this, an ace organisation known as ‘Pregnant Then Screwed‘ has stepped up to help us mummies!
What is ‘Pregnant Then Screwed‘?
‘…is a safe space for mothers to tell their stories of pregnancy or maternity discrimination and to receive the support and protection they need.’
‘Pregnant Then Screwed is a community of people who want change. Most of our community are women who have encountered pregnancy or maternity discrimination. they now want to turn their negative experience into something positive.’ (Pregnant Then Screwed
What do they do?
‘Pregnant Then Screwed protects, supports and promotes the rights of mothers who suffer the effects of systemic, cultural, and institutional discrimination through our various schemes and activities, including: A free legal advice service, a website where women post their stories of discrimination anonymously, lobbying the Government for legislative change, and a mentor scheme that supports women who are considering legal action against their employer.’ (Pregnant Then Screwed)
Ok, so what exactly ARE our rights as workers in the UK?
These three videos break down our rights perfectly…
Video one: Your workplace rights when pregnant, on maternity leave or when returning after maternity leave
Video two: Flexible working and shared parental leave
Video three: Holiday entitlement and holiday pay, Keeping in Touch Days, Changes to your role when you return, Redundancies, the 3 month time limit, costs of pursuing a claim and what happens if your employer puts you on a performance improvement plan
But is discrimination against mums REALLY an issue…?
Check out these statistics if you’re sceptical!
* 54,000 women a year are forced out of their employment due to pregnancy or maternity leave (EHRC 2016)
* 77% of working mums have encountered negative/discriminatory treatment in the workplace (EHRC 2016)
* 40% of employers say they would avoid hiring a woman of childbearing age (Slater and Gordon 2015)
* 44% of working mums say they earn less money than before they had children (Working mums research 2017)
You can read more statistics here.
What can I do if I feel that my employer is being unreasonable?
You can call Pregnant Then Screwed for free legal advice on 0161 9305300, or for flexible working advice you can call 07960113252.
How can Pregnant Then Screwed support me?
As stated above, you can call their helpline and speak directly to Pregnant Then Screwed some seriously awesome advice. They also have a mentoring service to help support ladies who have experienced discrimination in the workplace and are considering taking their case to a tribunal.
How can I get involved with this campaign?
Are you interested in becoming involved? Awesome!
You can send an email to: [email protected]
You can share your own story/experience with Pregnant Then Screwed here.
If you’d like to share your story on our website, email me at [email protected]!
In short; Pregnant Then Screwed are a fantastic organisation who endeavour to give us women a voice in the workplace, empower us in smashing the ‘glass ceiling’, defend our work rights, and campaign to close the gender pay gap.
Has your employer (or ex-exployer) ever discriminated against you due to you becoming pregnant & giving birth? Let us know in the comments! I hope that this article has helped those who need the support to access the information that they need.
Love from Katie. Xx
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