New BSI Guidance on Menstruation and Menopause in the Workplace
Key Contact: Claire Knowles
Author: Adam McGlynn
The British Standards Institute (“BSI”), the UK National Standards Body, has published a new workplace standard for dealing with menstruation and menopause in the workplace.
The new guidance BS30416:2023, is designed to help organisations better support employees going through menstruation or menopause. The guidance takes the form of advisory recommendations to establish good practice, not a code of practice.
Amongst the recommendations for employers are to:
- Assess the workplace culture to determine the general awareness of menstruation and menopause and whether employees are given opportunities for open conversations or to request support.
- Ensure that line managers and HR managers receive suitable training or resources to understand the potential impact of menstruation and menopause.
- Review the workplace environment to ensure proper control and the availability of facilities such as toilets, discrete changing rooms, and quiet recovery spaces.
- Examine relevant policies (well-being, diversity and inclusion, performance management, sickness and absences, flexible working, etc.) to ensure they consider menstruation and menopause.
- Evaluate work designs to allow for flexibility and accommodate individual needs. This can include scheduling, break timings, comfort adjustments such as access to individual cooling or heating, and opportunities for sitting or stretching.
The guidance emphasises flexibility, recognising that experiences of menstruation and menopause vary significantly, and not everyone will seek support from their employers.
You can also read about our previous article about menopause in the workplace here.
For advice on any of the topics discussed, contact the Employment team at Acuity Law.