Posted 6/17/2006 5:46 AM (GMT -6)

I'm sorry you're having such a struggle to keep working.

Neither the Americans with Disabilities Act nor the Family Medical Leave Act are any sort of job guarantee, or job insurance.  And in order to evoke -- use -- either of them, you have some very specific requirements you must fill.  And yes, you can be fired from your job, even though you do have a disability, and even though you have disclosed that disability, and requested "reasonable accommodation".

Here are the legal steps you must take to evoke the ADA.  You have to disclosed to your boss that you have a disability, and as such, are requesting a "reasonable accommodation" to that disablity.  And you

have to provide your employer with a written statement about what that "reasonable accommodation" might be:  fewer hours (yet you'd still do the same work), or shorter hours spread out over more days, or doing the work from a sitting position, or ..

whatever might work for you.  Once you've disclosed that you have a disability, and asked for "reasonable accommodation"

(I put that in quotes because it is a specific legal phrase that carries with it particular legal requirements)

the boss has to consider -- note I said consider, not accept --

those "reasonable accommodations".  If he (or upper management) thinks you can do the same level of work with those accommodations, then they can let you do that.  If they don't, then you can be fired.

You are telling us that you have a certain number of sick days, and a certain procedure you must follow to take those days.  Unless your disability somehow interfers with your ability to "follow the rules" and take the steps necessary to use the sick days (calling in, calling someone else to enter it into the computer), you can be challenged about why you didn't do that.  It's an expectation of all employees, and the ADA doesn't excuse you from all employee expectations -- only those that you and your employer have agreed writing.  As for taking a week of sick leave "in advance" -- whether this is acceptable or not would depend entirely on your employee benefits manual, or procedure. Most companies cannot afford to have an employee gone for very long without it becoming an inconvenience for a lot of others -- scheduling, filling in for your absence, all that.  Most employers would question you being gone for a week, with or without a "doctors excuse".

If indeed you can't perform your job without taking more sick leave than is alloted to other employees; if indeed you can't perform your job, even with "reasonable accommodation" agreed to, in writing, between you and your employer -- then yes, you can be fired.

As for the Family Medical Leave Act -- you can use up those days (I've forgotten what the number is) for your own medical needs, but you need to know that they are unpaid. and once they're gone, they're gone.

I don't know what kind of work you do.  You might start looking around your place of employment to see if perhaps there are other jobs you can do more effectively, and without missing so much work,

or if indeed you might have to consider quitting, or working only part-time, or applying for SSDI, or some other alternative.

And no, they don't have any obligation to be concerned, or to make allowances for you, because you are disabled. The whole point of the ADA is to demand that employers treat people with disabilities the same as employees who don't have disabilities...not differently.

(No, I'm not a lawyer. But I have been a disabilities consultant, primarily with people with developmental disabilities, for the past 30+ years...)


...I am not a doctor, nor health professional, and don't pretend to be one, here.....

Posted 6/17/2006 7:25 AM (GMT -6)
Thank You both!

Just to clarify a few points...

I work part time with the least possible amount of days to maintain benefits.

I called in on a Thursday FOR Friday Saturday and Sunday ONLY. Only because I could not get into to see a doc and I had been told repeatedly to give as much warning as possible to provide for staffing issues. I realize now they don't want that much warning...

Yes I know about FMLA and I do follow all the procedures of my place of employment. It has been almost two years and the procedures seem to be quite complex, but I do follow them the best I can. My concern is that the "ball is dropped" at some point and there is little I can do about it. I don't have a problem following the procedures.

As for resonable accommodations, it has been my understanding that my employer has agreed to sick calls without reprimand. Every sick call that "slips through the cracks" is a diffrent story though. Other resonable accomadations that my employer has agreed to is working in an air cooled enviroment, and small frequent breaks on a regular basis (which is required by California Law for all employees). The later two have proven to only be words written on a piece of paper in HR.

Honestly, I think I am burned out. I am tired, I am confused about my life, and I am burned out at my job. I have been looking for employment else where, but I don't like to make major changes in short order, especially under duress. By January I hope to have a new job. Having only been a RN for almost 3 years, I am really starting to think that this IS NOT my calling in life. I love people. I love the people I care for and the work I do. I don't like politics, but you get that anywhere...
Sandy C.
Diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis September 2003 currently taking Copaxone.

Posted 6/17/2006 5:05 PM (GMT -6)
I'm sorry Sandy & Uppity, your right that FMLA does not guarantee someones employment.  That statement was an error on my part due to typing too fast and not enuf sleep eyes



Posted 6/18/2006 12:42 PM (GMT -6)
This may or may not help you.  I was just helping someone else who needed to try to find medical benefits even though she was working.  She was not able to work enough to maintain benefits, but through this Medicaid program she was able to work and still get benefits through Medicaid.  Maybe this could help.
Good luck!

Forum Information

Currently it is Monday, October 22, 2018 5:43 PM (GMT -6)
There are a total of 3,014,008 posts in 330,055 threads.
View Active Topics

Who's Online

This forum has 161962 registered members. Please welcome our newest member, tranquilshore.
199 Guest(s), 6 Registered Member(s) are currently online.  Details
Dino_F, brrogers10 , InTheShop , VinceInMT , ddyss , stickersteve