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The European Patent Office (EPO) Cannot Understand Women

Posted in Europe, Patents at 3:26 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Video download link | md5sum 677d4cd8d2baa294cdc0f8d9bdbc038c
EPO a Men Club
Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 4.0

Summary: The EPO is being made aware of women’s issues; since a lot of the management is a bunch of ‘alphamales’ [1, 2, 3] like Benoît Battistelli and his crony António Campinos (and their friends) we’re not likely to see policies that are kind to women (heck, Campinos tells women that he is “the f***ing president”; borderline harassment)

THE EPO has a number of crises, including a crisis of legitimacy. It does not obey court orders, it discriminates against women (even in 2022), and only about a third of staff is female. Those in higher-up positions are spouses and friends of male managers. Imagine trying to extend this crooked system to the courts (UPC), setting aside the gross biases on European software patents; the EPO is an epic bubble of crime, a bundle of corruption. Diplomatic immunity helps this persist.

“With management like this, will they get listened to? Will they find a sympathetic ear or just more “mansplaining”?”This video concerns a new document in circulation. In it, menopause is explained and the Central Staff Committee insists that EPO management should take the matter seriously. With management like this, will they get listened to? Will they find a sympathetic ear or just more “mansplaining”?

In the words of the Central Staff Committee: “Dear colleagues, Have you already dared to talk about menopause with your colleagues or your manager? Considering the EPO’s age pyramid, women over 45 are a growing population and this should make menopause and menopausal staff an important topic in our organisation. Yet the challenges faced by our colleagues at this natural phase in their life have been so far largely ignored and there is no specific support in place to ensure they can remain at work. Your Staff Representation explains the need for a menopause policy at the workplace and strives for a supportive working environment for menopausal colleagues in this paper.”

The paper is discussed above and reproduced below as HTML/GemText/plain text:

Zentraler Personalausschuss
Central Staff Committee
Le Comité Central du Personnel

Munich, 04/11/2022

Menopause: not a taboo

Dear Colleagues,

According to the Social Report 2021, out of a total of 6.261 staff members, 2.125 are female, this is 33,9% of EPO staff.

The majority of our female colleagues are 45 years or older1 and might therefore presently be going through pre-menopause or menopause. The menopausal transition most often begins between ages 45 and 55. It usually lasts about seven years but can be as long as 14 years, hence, it is likely that female staff suffer symptoms up to the time they retire.

Menopause is a natural part of a woman’s life; all female colleagues will eventually go through it. It can affect work-life severely, making this topic a major occupational health matter.

Still, menopause does not come naturally in conversations, and its impact on women remains largely ignored or underestimated. And worse still, it is often dismissed as a joke. Women themselves are often underinformed about the symptoms and fail to identify the first signs. When they finally become aware, they mostly keep to themselves and do not seek support. For instance, almost half of the women who needed a day off due to menopause symptoms say they would not tell their employer the real reason2.

Symptoms of pre-menopause and menopause impacting life at work

The symptoms that a woman in the menopausal phase experiences vary from one woman to another. We list below the most frequent menopausal symptoms that can affect women’s life at work3:

• vasomotor symptoms, including hot flashes, night sweats, and flushing (an estimated 75 percent of women experience hot flashes with menopause)
• insomnia
• depression
• anxiety
• difficulty concentrating
• memory problems
• headaches
• racing heart
• urinary tract infections (UTIs)
• reduced muscle and bone mass
• painful or stiff joints

1 EPO Social Report 2021 (CA/40/22 Add.2, page 9)
2 A woman’s relationship with the menopause is complicated. British Menopause Society fact sheet. Women’s Health Concern. www.womens-health-concern.org, published October 2017
3 Menopause: Symptoms, Causes, Treatment, and More (healthline.com)

These symptoms have an impact on well-being at work, self-confidence, performance, and might simply render it impossible to complete a normal working day. Certain tasks become more challenging or stressful than before, and symptoms occur unpredictably throughout the day making it harder to plan the working day.

Why the Office should offer support to pre-menopausal and menopausal staff

A menopause policy should be regarded as part of the duty of care of an organisation. Failing to support staff suffering menopause-related symptoms also bears risks for the employer and creates a lose-lose situation4.

The European Menopause and Andropause Society (EMAS) published exhaustive recommendations to employers, managers, healthcare professionals and women to make the workplace environment more menopause supportive, and to improve women’s wellbeing and their ability to remain in work5.

Some assessments of the impact of menopause at work show an alarming trend. An UK’s industry-wide research has revealed that nearly one million women (in UK) have had to leave their jobs due to uncomfortable menopausal symptoms, as menopausal women become the ‘fastest growing workplace demographic’6.

On the 22nd of March 2022, the EPO addressed the topic of menopause in a CIN drop-in session. The topic attracted 100 participants, mostly women. A poll among the participants revealed that 87% of them were impacted by menopausal symptoms at work. There seems to be a cause for action at the EPO.

With respect to the Office’s duty of care, and the recent initiatives on D&I topics, we expect that the Office is prepared to update the work policies in collaboration with the staff representation in order to truly support women in menopause.

Staff representation supports our female colleagues

In recent months, we have been in contact with the Occupational Health Services and the training department in order to find ways to raise the awareness of staff. We also encourage our female colleagues to bring up the topic of menopause. A review of the health and safety, well-being, and staff absence policies and frameworks is necessary so that menopause is recognised as a health issue.

We strongly encourage you to contact OHS should you experience symptoms or be in need of a medical advice.

As staff representatives, we re-affirm our offer for a safe place to share your concerns. We are there to support you and will work towards a review of the Office’s policies.

For us, menopause is not taboo, and it should also not be for you.

The Central Staff Committee

4 Employment law and menopause – Menopause in the Workplace | Henpicked
5 Global consensus recommendations on menopause in the workplace: A European Menopause and Andropause Society (EMAS) position statement
6 Research shows that menopause symptoms are forcing women out of the workplace | Aon

Based on the above links, the Microsoft takeover of the EPO persists. The EPO has become so utterly incompetent that it outsourced a lot of stuff to Microsoft (almost certainly illegal) and now it has Sharepoint with an intranet domain called “epocloud”. The EPO is run by corrupt clowns who rob the place and promote an illegal agenda of special interests. There’s more on this topic in our next video.

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