University Policy

The University is committed to ensuring the health, safety and welfare of all staff, students and visitors. Our health and safety policy recognises that we have particular responsibilities to protect vulnerable members of the community including expectant and new mothers and infants who may be affected by workplace activities. The University also has responsibilities to ensure that unborn children are protected against any workplace hazards that the expectant mother may be exposed to whilst at work.

In order to achieve this for expectant and new mothers, additional control measures may be required that take account of the increased vulnerability of this age group. We have a written a safety standard that aims to provide managers and expectant and new mothers with the necessary information to ensure that the additional needs of this vulnerable group are addressed in the university setting.


New or expectant mother means an employee who is pregnant; or who has given birth within the previous six months; or who is breastfeeding.

Given birth is defined as having ‘delivered a living child or, after 24 weeks of pregnancy, a stillborn child’.

Risk Assessment

We have a legal responsibility to ensure that risks to expectant and new mothers are identified, assessed and managed as soon as we become formally aware that an employee falls within this definition. This responsibility is triggered when an expectant or new mother gives written notification of the pregnancy or birth.

The New and Expectant Mothers Safety Standard provides advice for managers and employees on the types of issues that need to be addressed in risk assessments. It also describes how the University will monitor its arrangements to satisfy ourselves that these are effective.

These arrangements were agreed by University Health and Safety Committee in December 2016