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Protecting Pregnant Workers from Redundancy

The Government has announced its intention to hold a consultation exercise on options to ensure new and expectant mothers in work have sufficient protections from redundancy.

The announcement follows the publication of a report by the Women and Equalities Select Committee on pregnancy and maternity discrimination, which found that pregnant women and mothers report more discrimination and poor treatment at work now than they did a decade ago. The report predicted that, with record numbers of women in work in 2016, the situation is likely to decline further unless it is tackled effectively now.

The Government has also committed to considering what further guidance can be provided to both courts and claimants about existing flexibilities in the employment tribunal system to extend the time limit for bringing a case.

Currently, the three-month time limit for bringing a case can be extended when the independent employment tribunal decides it is “just and equitable” to do so.

“We are determined to tackle pregnancy and maternity discrimination and a key part of that is making sure new and expectant mothers are supported and treated fairly by their employers,” explained Business Minister Margot James.

“While most businesses abide by the law, some do not,” she added. “There should be zero tolerance of discrimination against pregnant women or women who have just given birth, that’s why today we are committing to making sure new and expectant mothers have sufficient protections from redundancy.”

Contains public sector information licensed under the Open Government Licence v3.0.

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