Be the Boss Over Cancer

I have returned to work after 6 weeks off due to cancer diagnosis, surgery, etc.  I have been back for one month.  Sometimes I feel sick, nauseous, etc.  I have to put my head down, or maybe I close my eyes.  My chemo treatments are bi-weekly, time of it applied

to FMLA.  Now they want me to go home if I do not feel well.  They actually sent me home the other day.  I do not get paid for this time off as I have no paid time left.  These

sick feelings do not last all day, maybe for a few minutes or so, then I have to compose

myself.  I am also given tasks to do that have performance quotas on them which I

cannot always meet.  I do not feel that I am being treated fairly at all.  The only accomodations they made for me was a new chair and changing my start time to a later time.  I was asked to work less hours.  I cannot afford to do that.  Don't I have any

protection under ADA laws, etc.?

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  • Alice McKenney

    Alice McKenney on Dec 5, 2011

    Cancer and Careers Staff Comment:

    Hi Megan,

    Thanks so much for reaching out to us.  You very likely have protection under the ADA.  There are two resources that I would love for you to check out.  The first is the Job Accommodation Network  - they provide a number of great resources, including a sample job accommodation request letter, and a directory of accommodation suggestions:  An accommodation that you may want to consider speaking with someone about is flex time and/or telecommuting from home.  You should also find out if in the past anyone at your company has had to deal with a health impairment or disability, and find out how your office managed that - there may be a precedent in place.

    In terms of what is legal and what's not, you should contact the Cancer Legal Resource Center.  They will be able to definitively tell you if what your company is asking of you is legal, and can let you know next steps you might want to consider taking.  Their website is, and their phone number is 1-866-843-2572.

    Good luck!


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