Pregnant women face discrimination in Australia

Last Updated: Fri, Nov 16, 2012 12:00 hrs

Sydney, Nov 16 (IANS) Pregnant women and mothers face discrimination, negative comments and dead ends in their career in many workplaces in Australia, a study has found.

A survey by the Australian Bureau of Statistics of 357,500 working women with a child under two found that 19 percent faced discrimination in the workplace and 29 percent left the workforce permanently while pregnant or after having their child, according to the adelaidenow website.

The report said 29 percent of women started or returned to work within three months of the birth of the child, 28 percent returned between four and six months of the birth and 33 percent returned within 12 months.

Of the women who returned to work, more than half said they were motivated by a desire for adult interaction and mental stimulation. One in four said they returned to keep their employer happy.

The research showed 31,200 women felt they received negative comments from their manager or colleagues while 22,900 said they missed out on a promotion.

Around 10,100 women said their duties were changed without consultation and 4,500 said they were demoted.

To save costs, 87,900 parents (43 percent) preferred grandparents to keep their child, compared to 57,700 (28 percent) who utilised day care.

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