Should businesses be banned from firing pregnant women?

Should businesses be banned from firing pregnant women?

Action is needed in order to protect new and expectant mothers in the workplace – according to a recent report by MPs.

The Women and Equalities Committee has called for a ban on businesses making female employees redundant before, during and after pregnancy.

The BBC reports that the number of new mothers forced to leave their jobs has doubled to 54,000 since just 2005.

The Commission called for laws similar to those in Germany, whereby from the start of a pregnancy until four months following childbirth, employers can only dismiss an employee in extremely rare cases.

Committee Chairwoman Maria Miller commented that, unless this situation is rectified, the whole of the nation will suffer: “There are now record numbers of women in work in the UK.

“The economy will suffer unless employers modernise their workplace practices to ensure effective support and protection for expectant and new mums.”

Business Minister Margot James added: “It is completely unacceptable that pregnant women and new mothers are apparently being forced to quit their jobs because of outdated attitudes.

“Tackling this issue is a key priority of mine and this government and I would like to thank the committee for its important work. We will consider its recommendations carefully and respond in due course.”

The Committee also suggested a “substantial reduction” of the £1,200 for a female employee’s pursuing a pregnancy-related discrimination case to a tribunal.

We created a Twitter poll discussing this topic, asking whether businesses should be banned from firing pregnant women or whether it should be an employer’s personal choice. Have your say here.

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