Employee rights for women

We are all equal in the workplace but some of us are more equal than others… as George Orwell almost said. The UK’s #EmployeeRightsDay  shines a light on the rights we should celebrate, but also the stories we can share about experiences in the workplace. Founder Alex Monaco is an employment law solicitor and author of The Resignation Revolution. On the launch of his new book, he shares ten of the most important employee rights for women.

It's the UK's first Employee Rights Day!

It’s the UK’s first Employee Rights Day!

1.     Equal Pay

There may have been legislation on this since 1970, but it seems that employers are still playing catch up. Gender pay gap reporting was rolled out to include many employers this year. It shows a narrow pay gap between men and women in their 20s but one that widens with age, particularly in senior executive roles. A good start, but we have some way to go.

2.     Sexual Harassment

The #MeToo campaign has shone a light this year on how far we have to go, but the legislation does protect against unwanted conduct in the workplace and gives recourse to the Tribunal when it occurs.

3.     Equal Treatment

The right to not to be treated differently because of sex, marital status, or gender assignment are some of the protected characteristics under the Equality Act 2010.

4.     National Minimum Wage

Women make up a large part of our low paid workforce. The National Minimum Wage offers a minimum hourly rate of pay. Whilst it should be a living wage, at least it sets the bar to stave off exploitation of our lowest paid.

5.     Maternity Pay

The right to receive crucial pay for up to 39 weeks following the birth of a child.

6.     Right to Return

Women have the right to return to their own job in the first six months following their maternity or adoption leave and a comparable job in the following six months.

7.     Shared Parental Leave

Gone are the days when taking time off to look after a new baby or child was for women only. Both parents now have the right to share parental leave and take time off in the first year of a new child in a family. The more men take parental leave will be a crucial part of developing a flexible approach to work and family life that will smash through the glass ceiling.

8.     Time Off Work for Family and Dependents

Emergencies happen and kids get sick. You have the right to take reasonable time off to look after dependants in an emergency. You don’t have the right to pay, but it is a start.

9.     Flexible Working

The right to request flexible working has been an important feature of workplace rights for the last 16 years. This allows for compacted hours, job shares, part-time jobs and home working.

10.  Reasonable Adjustments for Carers

This hasn’t happened yet, but we are hoping for change to the Equality Act to offer reasonable adjustments for those with caring responsibilities. Former Monaco Solicitors lawyer, Ellie Reeves MP, is co-sponsoring an Early Day Motion to make this change.

Alex Monaco

Alex Monaco


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18 thoughts on “Employee rights for women”

  1. Thanks for sharing this post! It’s good to remind yourself of what rights you have and I like the message behind your blog so I shall be reading some more!:)

  2. America is still behind on many of these things too. We have groups fighting hard but our politicians are either stuck in their old ways or too busy fighting each other to care. We will get there eventually. Change is coming! #MMBC

  3. Employment law was one of my favorite classes at university and for a fantastic reason! If you don’t know the law, you don’t truly know your rights and you end up getting kicked in the butt for it. As an American working in hospitality, I still face some of these things, especially sexual harassment. When customers are spending big bucks, companies expect you to keep your mouth shut if you are sexually harassed. Speak up and you are gone in a second because temp culture makes employees feel as if they are 100% replaceable.

  4. We have come so far with women’s rights, sometimes understanding just what our position is can be tricky, this is a lovely clear way to set things out. Thank you #ABloggingGoodTime

  5. Definitely a great day to mark – and remind ourselves we have so many rights, let’s make sure we use them and help others who don’t know x #ThatFridayLinky

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