Young mothers are significantly more likely to experience pregnancy and maternity discrimination – with six times as many under 25 year olds being dismissed on telling their employer they are pregnant. The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) has decided to do something about this.
Fighting pregnancy and maternity discrimination at work
Teaming up The Young Women’s Trust, The Fawcett Society, the Royal College of Midwives, Maternity Action and the Trade Unions Congress, the EHRC has created #PowerToTheBump, a campaign designed to help young, expectant and new mothers know their rights at work and have the confidence to stand up for them.
#PowerToTheBump plans to use social media to bring young mums together, encouraging them to share their experiences and to feel more confident asserting their rights.
Deputy Chair of the Equality and Human Rights Commission Caroline Waters says:
Young working mothers are feeling the brunt of pregnancy and maternity discrimination with more than any other age group being forced out of their jobs, facing harassment and experiencing issues with their health as a result… We want young women to use #PowerToTheBump to speak up against this unfairness. They need the knowledge and confidence to raise issues with their employers so they can focus on their health and wellbeing.
Understanding your rights is something we here at RightsInfo are passionate about too!
You can support the campaign by watching and sharing this fab #PowerToTheBump video from Channel Mum. It features vloggers Katie Ellison, Jess Avery, Charlotte Louise Taylor and Emily Norris sharing their own experiences to encourage young mothers to protect their rights at work during pregnancy.
The Campaign’s Top Tips!
… It’s good to have early conversations with your line manager.
… You are entitled to take reasonable paid time off during working hours for antenatal care. You should be given the time to travel to the appointment or class.
… The most important thing is to keep talking with work, tell them your wishes and get it all agreed in writing so you feel in control.
… Always talk to work about any risks that are worrying you. Your employer has a duty to look after the health and safety of everyone at work.
… Don’t cause yourself additional stress. You shouldn’t experience a negative impact on your health and stress levels, be given an unsuitable workload or be treated unfavourably and feel less valued.
#PowerToTheBump is a great new initiative and looks set to be a very valuable resource for new working parents. Take a look at the EHRC’s campaign page here.
For more information on pregnancy and maternity discrimination, take a look at our recent post. You can find out more about your rights at work and how human rights help to promote equality with our RightsInfo resources.