Imagine a world where women don’t lose their jobs, or miss out on promotions, because they’re pregnant or have just had a baby. I can’t even picture it, because so many women experience maternity discrimination, today, in 2021. My guest on this episode, Joeli Brearley, lost her job the day after she told her employer she was pregnant and went onto launch the charity and campaigning group Pregnant Then Screwed.
Joeli is a mum of two and campaigns for better rights for pregnant women and mothers, including asking for three months’ ring-fenced parental leave for both parents at 90% of salary, properly subsidised childcare from six months old and increasing the time limit to raise a tribunal claim from three months to six months.
Her book Pregnant Then Screwed: The Truth About the Motherhood Penalty and How to Fix It is a must-read expose of the practices and systems that force women out of their jobs because they’re having or have had a baby, and about how we can challenge them and demand a fairer, level playing field.
Joeli talks to me about her own experiences of losing her job while pregnant, why expecting mothers to raise a tribunal claim within three months when they’re in a vulnerable place is unacceptable and why it’s critical that the government invest properly in the childcare system. We also talk about flexible working and how the pandemic has affected it.
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You can buy my book OMG It’s Twins now.
Producer: Imogen Hart
Music: Epidemic Sound
Artwork: Eleanor Bowmer