Female candidates being rejected for fear that they might have children

Nearly one in three bosses would reject a female candidate because they fear she might start a family, research has found. The survey of 501 UK managers also discovered one in four would turn away a woman because she was a single parent, 29% because she had young children and 28% because she was recently engaged or married.

Almost two in five admitted they would advertise roles as available to men only if the law allowed them, while a similar proportion said they thought men were more dedicated to their jobs.

This discrimination also affects women generally – those who don’t plan to have children or already have children – as it is about attitudes and stereotypes applied to women generally. The survey also revealed one in seven bosses did nothing to support mothers returning from maternity leave, while a third thought women were more of a future investment risk than men.

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