Yes – It is always good practice to ensure risk assessments are carried with pregnant employees and listed below are some of the main reasons why.
- Statutory Obligation: Under the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999, employers are obligated to assess the workplace risks posed to new or expectant mothers. Failing to carry out this risk assessment can lead to legal repercussions.
- Health & Safety of the Employee: Pregnancy can make an employee more susceptible to certain risks. Assessing these ensures that the workplace is safe for them, protecting their health and that of the unborn child.
- Prevent Discrimination: Under the Equality Act 2010, pregnancy and maternity are protected characteristics. Not conducting a risk assessment could be seen as less favourable treatment, opening up the possibility of a discrimination claim.
- Avoidance of Unfavourable Treatment: Once you’re aware of any risks, you can take steps to eliminate or reduce them, avoiding any accusations of unfavourable treatment due to pregnancy.
- Financial Implications: Failure to carry out risk assessments or address identified risks can lead to injury or illness, potential claims for compensation, and increased sick leave.
- Retention & Morale: Demonstrating that you care about the well-being of your staff can improve employee retention, morale, and overall workplace culture.
- Minimising Absenteeism: By addressing risks early, you reduce the likelihood of pregnancy-related health issues that could lead to increased absence.
- Flexible Working Consideration: The risk assessment might also help you identify if any adjustments or flexible working arrangements are necessary, helping the employee balance work and health.
If you require any support carrying our such assessments please do not hesitate to contact us at Astons Solicitors on 01604 700099 or contact me directly email@example.com