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Creating Inclusive Fertility Benefits 🌈

This article sheds light on how fertility benefits could create inequity for LGBTQ+ employees.

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Written by Apricity Team

Did you know that 1 in 6 people globally face infertility (WHO)?

As this number rises, with a growing awareness around infertility, it has prompted many companies to offer fertility benefits, undoubtedly a step in the right direction. However it is increasingly essential for companies to consider the inclusivity of their benefit plans and examine whether they inadvertently create new inequities for their LGBTQ+ employees. 

The fine print of fertility benefit plans often necessitates a medical diagnosis of infertility from a doctor before they can authorise treatment. This poses challenges for those whom assisted reproduction is their only route to have a baby, such as reciprocal IVF surrogacy, fertility preservation for transitioning and solo parents. 

These exclusionary policies have a disproportionate impact on couples and individuals in the LGBTQ+ community, leaving them to bear the financial burden alone. As advocates for diversity and inclusion, we must address this gap in support.

In the UK, 1 in 5 identify as LGB (YouGov), highlighting an evident need for inclusive benefits. And a survey by Progyny in the US, involving 1000 LGBTQ+ individuals revealed that while 40% had access to fertility benefits, only 32% could access this without a medical diagnosis. 

So what can employers do to bridge this gap and foster inclusivity? 

  • Review and revise benefit policies to evaluate whether they restrict access based on medical diagnoses. Consider a more inclusive approach that accounts for diverse fertility needs.

  • Listen and educate through creating a safe and open environment about fertility challenges in the LGBTQ+ community, encouraging employees to share their experiences allowing better understanding and empathy

  • Partner with Advocacy groups to gain insights and perspectives, ensuring policies align with community needs

  • Comprehensive benefits that support the different needs of LGBTQ+ individuals and couples 

  • Promote inclusive work culture through emphasising the value of diversity and inclusivity throughout your organisation. 

By taking these steps, we can create a more equitable and supportive workplace for all, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. 

Written by Apricity Team

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