Nickie Aiken, Member of Parliament for the Cities of London & Westminster, is proud to have launched the Fertility Workplace Pledge, calling on employers to take positive action to make sure everyone going through fertility treatment is supported.
Around 3.5 million people in the UK are currently struggling to conceive naturally, but currently, employees going through fertility treatment have no right to take time off work for medical appointments, with employment legislation only allowing time-off for pregnancy, maternity and paternity antenatal care. In fact, many employers put fertility treatment in the same category as cosmetic surgery!
Nickie has been working with Fertility Matters At Work, Burgess Mee Family Law, and Fertility Network UK to raise awareness of fertility treatment in the UK, and in Parliament, launched the Fertility Workplace Pledge. Nickie was delighted so many cross-party MPs are supporting her campaign. Working together, Nickie has also persuaded a number of employers to sign the pledge including NatWest, the Co-Op, Channel 4 and Zurich Insurance.
Many people hide fertility treatment from their employers for fear of being overlooked for promotion, having major projects taken off them, or being made redundant. That was the case Nickie heard from Ann, a Two Cities resident who came to Nickie following her ordeal with their employer. Ann was in a career she loved, but after her employer found out about her fertility treatment, was made to choose between a career she loved, or having a child.
Nickie does not believe this should not be happening in 2022.
It's time to change the attitudes towards fertility treatment in the UK, and support all those going through it. Find out more about the Fertility Workplace Pledge, and encourage your employer to sign up. And if you own a company, sign up to the pledge!