Pregnancy is an exciting time for any expectant mother, but along with the excitement and the expectation is the need for comfort and safety in the workplace. After the initial risk assessment has been carried out and the working environment has been deemed safe, the next consideration must be how pregnant employees can be made as comfortable as possible so they can carry out their job with ease over the course of their pregnancy.
Creating a comfortable workspace
One of the most important factors for pregnant women in the workplace is ensuring they have a comfortable workspace, particularly if they sit at a desk for most of their time. As Maternity Action points out, it is crucial that pregnant women are given a safe and comfortable work area for the duration of their pregnancy. This could include purchasing some new operator chairs and accessories that accommodate the physical changes employees will experience as their pregnancy progresses.
Which workspace accessories could help?
Along with ergonomic operator chairs and new desk considerations, back wedges and supports can be useful additions to ease the back pain caused by changes to the spine and muscles. Forearm rests are also very helpful in preventing overreaching for computer mice or keyboards and for giving pregnant employees more space and comfort as they work.
Other things to consider
Although investing in a new operator chair range and some comfortable accessories for pregnant employees is important, it is also worth noting that there are several other things to consider during, and even after, the pregnancy. These include ensuring employees are receiving correct maternity pay and rights and that they understand what is available to them. It is also important to consider a comfortable space where women can breastfeed and store milk once the baby is born.
It is vital that workspaces are comfortable and safe environments for pregnant employees throughout their pregnancy so they feel able to carry out their job with ease. An adapted work area that takes into consideration the physical changes that take place during pregnancy is one very important way of putting this into action. Employers can ensure this happens by taking time to create a comfortable workspace that helps employees to feel valued and appreciated.