I have lost a lot of faith in companies following these experiences, particularly as this involved a pregnancy company who preach their support of new and expectant mothers

I was in a company for 5 years and was very happy there but the company wasn’t doing well. They announced they were shutting down the UK business five days after I had a positive pregnancy test. I was then offered a job at a company which creates products and a magazine for new mothers. Whilst in my consultation period, I was given an email offer and negotiated with them that day through a recruitment consultant. At the end of the day, I chose to be honest and told the recruitment consultant I was 11 weeks pregnant and to let the company know. The next morning the recruitment consultant received an email telling him the position was no longer available:
The company.. ”is going through a process of reviewing all open roles and deciding whether they are necessary or could be filled by internal resource re allocation. In the case of the sales team, it has been decided that we will not recruit to fill the role of Account Manager on Alison’s team, but instead reallocate the sales resource that we already have.” My solicitor sent a letter which certainly packed a punch;
“This behaviour is of course unacceptable but in light of *your companies* business which focuses on helping mothers and mothers-to-be it is clearly all the more incredible and hypocritical. In the circumstances, it is clearly ironic that your message should be “Giving mums more”. I note that your website even contains a link for “maternity rights” and states that for “mums-to-be, employers have to tread extra carefully.” Whilst you are happy to advise the public of their rights, you clearly have a total disregard for them as a company. Your actions are very much at odds with your own brand and product. The link between my client’s pregnancy and the withdrawal of the role is indisputable.” She followed up with an email, both of which they chose to ignore.
I then filled out an employment tribunal form and started a new job (without telling my new employer I was pregnant). Three months or so pass, I discover that my form got lost in the post (which I question) and I would have to pay a fee and might not be eligible as the amount of time following the event had been too long.
I was then made redundant from the company that hired me whilst pregnant whilst on maternity leave and 1 month before I was due to return. It was the only sales position they got rid of in the restructure.
Understandably, I have lost a lot of faith in companies following these experiences, particularly as this involved a pregnancy company who preach their support of new and expectant mothers. I feel like there are a lot of stories like mine out there that perhaps don’t get told.
I considered writing an article about it but once I’d had my son, but then being immersed in new motherhood, everything fell by the wayside. Then after yesterday’s Stylist article, I felt so saddened to see that this is all too common a situation and saw the platform here to be able to share my story with others.
I’m now over the moon to be working for a popular Mum’s website and back in a supportive environment with plenty of other mothers selling a lovely product. I wouldn’t generalise to say that every company would be discriminatory but the truth of the matter is that regardless of talent, once you fall pregnant, many employers see it as a problem for their business. From a new mother’s perspective, the government is geared towards supporting mother’s going back to work, with family and childcare costs being such that most households can only survive on two incomes. Companies behaving like this is completely unjustifiable considering the majority of women, career-driven women included, have the desire to start a family. If these cases are not reported or a formal case is taken on, nothing will change these injustices unfortunately so I am so glad this website was set up and that Stylist raised awareness with their publication this week.

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