SUERC becomes an Endometriosis Friendly Employer

Published: 31 January 2023

The Scottish Universities Environmental Research Centre (SUERC) has signed up to become an Endometriosis Friendly Employer.

The Scottish Universities Environmental Research Centre (SUERC) has signed up to become an Endometriosis Friendly Employer.


Endometriosis affects one in 10 women and people assigned female at birth in the UK, costing the UK economy £8.2 billion a year in loss of work, treatment, and healthcare costs.


The Endometriosis Friendly Employer scheme, led by Endometriosis UK, provides guidance on how to support employees with endometriosis, with employers committing to providing those with the disease the necessary support to thrive at work.


Endometriosis is a disease where cells similar to the ones in the lining of the womb are found elsewhere in the body, usually within the pelvic cavity. Each month these cells react to the menstrual cycle in the same way to those in the womb, building up and then breaking down and bleeding.


Unlike the cells in the womb that leave the body as a period, this blood has no way to escape. This leads to inflammation, pain, and the formation of scar tissue (adhesions). The disease can have a huge impact on a person’s work and career.


Becoming an Endometriosis Friendly Employer shows a commitment to staff who have the disease and helps break down the stigma surrounding endometriosis in the workplace.


SUERC, which is based in East Kilbride, provides access to cutting-edge analytical equipment for earth, environmental and biological science researchers. It is part of a wider network of facilities across the UK, funded by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), which produce analyses of environmental, archaeological and geological materials, from the oldest materials to modern environmental processes, understanding deep earth processes through to the climate system.


Dr Millie Bompard, of SUERC and the University of Glasgow, led the accreditation process. Dr Bompard said: “SUERC is committed to supporting our workforce and helping employees reach their full potential, and we’re proud to have signed up to be an Endometriosis Friendly Employer.


“Endometriosis can affect people who menstruate in a very significant way. As a facility which interacts with a wide range of universities across the UK and the world, we’re keen to do our part to foster a more open conversation about menstruation and issues like endometriosis, polycystic ovary syndrome and the menopause.


“These issues can be particularly challenging for people who conduct fieldwork and spend time in distant locations, often in difficult conditions. We’re in the process of putting together guidance on managing menstruation in the field which aims to improve the fieldwork experience for colleagues, which will be shared on our online learning platform, GAEA, in the coming months.”


Faye Farthing, Head of Communications and Campaigns at Endometriosis UK said: “Employers who sign up to the scheme are helping break down the taboo and stigma around endometriosis and menstrual conditions and developing work environments where all staff are comfortable talking about possible practical adjustments that could be of benefit.


“A huge thank you to SUERC for championing and supporting those with endometriosis by signing up to the scheme. We now look forward to seeing many other employers following their lead.”

First published: 31 January 2023

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