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Work and pregnancy

Hi, I work in a butchers shop and handle the raw meats and at the end of the day, the cleaning products. Will this be safe while I'm pregnant? I wash my hands a lot throughout the day, and try to wear gloves anyway when cleaning because the chemicals dry my hands out. But I'm reading conflicting things about the raw meat. Does anyone know anything about this? Thanks x

3 Replies

Hello Racaellindseywalker,

I can't specifically answer your question with regards to your role. However, all workplaces should have a general risk assessment which includes making sure that it is a safe place for pregnant women and new mothers to work, and which identifies any risks to women of

childbearing age who could be pregnant in the future.

Upon notifiying your employer of your pregnancy, if you feel that there is a potential risk, then your employer must carry out a specific risk assessment. This could include factors already highlighted in the original risk assessment, along with anything else raised by your GP or midwife.

You can find further and more detailed information on this matter in our booklet: Pregnancy, maternity and returning to work: an employers guide. Go to page six, 'Completing a risk assessment'.

See also the article: 'I'm pregnant: What happens at work?'

Hopefully, you can find some help amongst this information.

Good luck!



Thanks, that was really useful. I've only just found out, and I've worked out I'll probably only be about 5 weeks. Do I have to tell my employer straight away? Or can I wait until after my first doctors appointment (next week) when i'm a little further along? Thanks


Hello again,

I'm really glad you found the information to be useful. Legally you do not have to tell your employer that you are pregnant and intend to take your maternity leave until the 15th week before the baby is due. See our article: How do I tell my employer about my pregnancy

Try and find time to read both of the booklets attached to this article as documents:

Pregnancy, maternity and returning to work: An employee's guide


Pregnancy, maternity and returning to work: An employer's guide

Both are packed with information regarding work and pregnancy and I'm sure will answer most, if not all, the quetions you may have on this issue.

Good luck!



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