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Currys offers paid leave to employees undergoing gender affirming care.

In a move praised by LGBTQ+ advocates, Currys has introduced new company policies which include six weeks of additional paid leave for employees undergoing gender affirming care or treatment.

1 minute read

Published 29 June 2023

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Reports of the new policy refer to ‘gender reassignment’ which adopts the language of the Equality Act 2010, which now is somewhat outdated. Transgender and non-binary people tend to refer to their gender identity as being ‘affirmed’ and not ‘reassigned’ which incorrectly suggests their identify is conferred on them by another.

Currys have also introduced new policies offering paid leave for fertility treatments, premature birth support and pregnancy loss support. Currys’ announcement follows a similar move by Itsu in 2022 who introduced paid time off for gender affirming treatment as part of wider ‘wellbeing measures’.

Policies such as these are integral to ensuring employees feel supported in times of need and help to increase a sense of job security amongst staff, essential at a time when many are feeling the squeeze from the rising cost of living.

These policies will also increase a sense of job satisfaction and will help with retention and recruitment of key talent who might otherwise feel it necessary to leave work in order to undergo treatment or care.

Policies such as these also help to normalise trans people in the workplace, who often struggle to find or stay in work because of their trans identity. They also help remove stigma around things like fertility treatment and trans healthcare.

It was reported in February 2023 that the number of Employment Tribunal claims relating to discrimination against trans employees has more than doubled in the past year.

The benefits of caring for your staff

Currys’ new policies are no doubt driven, at least in part, by the increased attention given by employers to the emotional and mental wellbeing of their employees since COVID-19. A shift in expectations amongst workers has meant employers are often now expected to have more regard for the support and welfare of staff. Increased flexible working, additional forms of paid leave and wellbeing programmes are examples of how employers are now engaging with the welfare of their staff.

Indeed, many workers now prioritise wellbeing and a good work/life balance over pay rises or bonuses when considering career advancement. While that feeling might have lessened slightly with the rising cost of living, there are still significant reports that show pay is not top of the list for many when it comes to work and career advancement.

A recent report on the rise in employee grievances showed a majority of recent grievances were related to wellbeing, happiness and relationship issues between staff. Employers that aren’t keeping up with the times may find it difficult to retain and attract talent. By improving retention and becoming a more attractive place to work, employers can also help reduce disruption caused by departing staff (especially at senior levels) and reduce recruitment costs.

The policies announced by Currys also greatly advance inclusion and diversity, which is well known to have positive impacts on company culture, job satisfaction and productivity. Evidently, given the benefits, more employers should be considering what policies they can introduce to support the wellbeing of their staff, and what benefits they might derive from improving job security and job satisfaction.

For more information, visit our Employment Lawyers page.

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Longer Reads

Currys offers paid leave to employees undergoing gender affirming care.

In a move praised by LGBTQ+ advocates, Currys has introduced new company policies which include six weeks of additional paid leave for employees undergoing gender affirming care or treatment.

Published 29 June 2023

Associated sectors / services

Reports of the new policy refer to ‘gender reassignment’ which adopts the language of the Equality Act 2010, which now is somewhat outdated. Transgender and non-binary people tend to refer to their gender identity as being ‘affirmed’ and not ‘reassigned’ which incorrectly suggests their identify is conferred on them by another.

Currys have also introduced new policies offering paid leave for fertility treatments, premature birth support and pregnancy loss support. Currys’ announcement follows a similar move by Itsu in 2022 who introduced paid time off for gender affirming treatment as part of wider ‘wellbeing measures’.

Policies such as these are integral to ensuring employees feel supported in times of need and help to increase a sense of job security amongst staff, essential at a time when many are feeling the squeeze from the rising cost of living.

These policies will also increase a sense of job satisfaction and will help with retention and recruitment of key talent who might otherwise feel it necessary to leave work in order to undergo treatment or care.

Policies such as these also help to normalise trans people in the workplace, who often struggle to find or stay in work because of their trans identity. They also help remove stigma around things like fertility treatment and trans healthcare.

It was reported in February 2023 that the number of Employment Tribunal claims relating to discrimination against trans employees has more than doubled in the past year.

The benefits of caring for your staff

Currys’ new policies are no doubt driven, at least in part, by the increased attention given by employers to the emotional and mental wellbeing of their employees since COVID-19. A shift in expectations amongst workers has meant employers are often now expected to have more regard for the support and welfare of staff. Increased flexible working, additional forms of paid leave and wellbeing programmes are examples of how employers are now engaging with the welfare of their staff.

Indeed, many workers now prioritise wellbeing and a good work/life balance over pay rises or bonuses when considering career advancement. While that feeling might have lessened slightly with the rising cost of living, there are still significant reports that show pay is not top of the list for many when it comes to work and career advancement.

A recent report on the rise in employee grievances showed a majority of recent grievances were related to wellbeing, happiness and relationship issues between staff. Employers that aren’t keeping up with the times may find it difficult to retain and attract talent. By improving retention and becoming a more attractive place to work, employers can also help reduce disruption caused by departing staff (especially at senior levels) and reduce recruitment costs.

The policies announced by Currys also greatly advance inclusion and diversity, which is well known to have positive impacts on company culture, job satisfaction and productivity. Evidently, given the benefits, more employers should be considering what policies they can introduce to support the wellbeing of their staff, and what benefits they might derive from improving job security and job satisfaction.

For more information, visit our Employment Lawyers page.

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