2020-12-16 6:33

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TUC Issures A Damning Covid-19 Report Into Employers Treatment Of Mums
And Pregnant Women Workers

New and expectant mums have been acutely affected by the health and economic impacts of the coronavirus crisis, and the actions that government and employers have taken to respond to it.

So begins the Trade Union Congress (TUC) new report published today on the state of workplaces and the experiences of women who are mother's or newly expectant. It shows that discrimination against women is rife and that Covid-19 gave them even more of an excuse to discriminate.

Pic: Cover of TUC Report into Employer's and Covdi-19* Low-paid women told the TUC they had been forced to take on sick leave, unpaid leave, start their maternity leave early or leave their job altogether after health and safety concerns were not addressed by their employer.

During the week commencing 1 June 2020, the TUC surveyed a self-selected sample of 3,407 pregnant women, mums on maternity leave or women that have recently returned to work from maternity leave to understand the key issues they face at work and the impact this health and economic crisis is having on their incomes, jobs and livelihoods.

The introduction to the report published by the TUC today, continues:

As a result, in June 2020, the TUC surveyed over 3,400 pregnant women and mums on maternity leave to find out about their experiences of work during the period. Since the Covid-19 pandemic began:

• One in four pregnant women and new mums in our survey have experienced unfair treatment or discrimination at work including being singled out for redundancy or furlough.

• Pregnant women’s health and safety rights are being routinely disregarded, leaving women feeling unsafe at work or without pay when they are unable to attend their workplaces.

• Low-paid pregnant women responding to our survey are almost twice as likely as women on median to high incomes to have lost pay and or been forced to stop work (either by being required to take sick leave when they were not sick or to take unpaid leave, start their maternity leave early or leave the workplace altogether) because of unaddressed health and safety concerns.

• 71 per cent of new mums in our survey planning to return to work in the next three months are currently unable to find childcare to enable them to do so. There are three immediate actions the TUC recommends the government take to protect women’s health, jobs and livelihoods. These include changes to health and safety practices, preventing discriminatory redundancies, an urgent emergency childcare bailout, an extension of the job retention scheme for parents (including mums returning from maternity leave) who cannot find childcare and an increase in protection for casual, agency and zero-hours workers.

You can download the full report by clicking on the cover pic above, or by going to the Unionsafety E-Library were, this report and others are available along with other resources on the issue of women, their health, safety, and rights.

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