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Women Asked More Often About Family Plans

Research from Fertility Family finds that just 3% of men are asked by managers or senior leadership about their plans to have children compared to more than a quarter of women.

By Maggie Mancini

The Infertility Awareness Report, conducted by experts supporting those trying to conceive Fertility Family, has revealed that women (27%) are nearly 10 times more likely to be asked by their manager about their plans to have children than men (3%).  

CIPD research shows that just a quarter of employers currently have at least one policy regarding fertility treatments, while 40% do not have a formal policy, and have no plans to introduce one. To gain an understanding of the impact of policies and attitudes toward infertility within the workplace, Fertility Family gathered insights from 429 U.K. respondents who have experienced infertility.  

The study reveals that nearly half (47%) of people feel uncomfortable asking for time off for fertility-related appointments. While 27% of people feel comfortable speaking to their manager about their fertility struggles, 43% do not feel comfortable doing the same.  

Additionally, one in four women have been asked about their plans to have children by either their manager or someone in senior management, compared to just 3% of men. Just 22% of people have reduced their hours to undergo fertility treatments, and a further 14% waited until they were in a senior role before considering their fertility journey to ensure they were financially able.  

“It can be daunting for an employee to share details of their health, particularly with sensitive conditions like fertility. So, it’s important to create a culture of open communication and support. Doing so allows employees to ask for the help they need, which in turn contributes towards increased productivity, satisfaction and retention,” says Kate Palmer, director of HR advice and consultancy at Peninsula. “A fertility policy both helps those trying to conceive and raises awareness of their struggles so that colleagues and managers know how to provide compassion and care.” 

Tags: EMEA July 2024, EMEA News

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