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How to avoid maternity discrimination as an employer

11 August 2015

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On their return to work after having a baby nearly one-in-10 women (9%) said their employer treated them worse, but the The Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS) has offered new guidance on avoiding maternal discrimination and the legal issues they involve.

The research, by the Equality and Human Rights Commission said that while two thirds of mothers (66%) felt their employer supported them willingly during pregnancy and when they returned to work, more than one-in-20 (7%) said they were put under pressure to hand in their notice.

Discrimination because of pregnancy or maternity is seen as ‘automatic discrimination’, ACAS explained.

There is no need for the woman to show that she has been treated less favourably than a male employee, or a female employee who was not pregnant, the government body warned in new guidance.

Employers should ensure they have rules in place that are designed to prevent discrimination in recruitment, determining pay, training and development, selection for promotion, discipline and grievances, and redundancy selection.

See the guidance in full here.

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