The unique health challenges women face

UNISON conference votes to support the ageing female workforce

The changing pension age and unique health challenges faced by women mean employers need to take positive steps to recognise the impact these factors have on women at work, UNISON women’s conference agreed in Liverpool today.

As most public sector workers are female, this is a vital issue for public services, delegates heard.

Carol Garfield from the West Midlands told conference that she works as a teaching assistant and she struggles to see how her role can be accommodated as she ages.

“There’s no desk job I can move to,” she added, “and I can’t work from home… I have visions of using a zimmer frame to enable me to join in the activities.”

Conference voted to:

  • work with the NEC to develop a survey of unison women members aged 55 and over to identify the challenges they face as an ageing workforce including impact on personal health and ability to fulfil their role as they age;
  • encourage regions and branches to work with employers to develop local policies to support women in an ageing workforce and how they can take proactive steps to support her