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Americans with Disabilities Act


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#1 barefut

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Posted 15 October 2009 - 06:56 PM

I was hoping it wouldn't come down to a fight but I guess it's going to be. I have requested that my work hours be reduced from 8:30am - 6:15pm to 8:30am - 3:30pm with a 1/2 hour lunch. My boss and co-workers are TOTALLY NOT on board with that and now it is sitting in the Human Resources department with the Americans with Disabilities Act paraphrased in my email, "employers must provide reasonable accomodation to include a reduction in work hours - unless the employer can prove that it would be a hardship to the business". I guess they are working on proving it.

I'm not sure I have this fight in me. The bottom line reason I am asking for reduced hours is because I am exhausted. What energy do I have left to fight them with? The long days are killing me. Here comes the "Wah" part: I don't get home on average until 6:45pm and then have to make, eat and clean up dinner, help with homework, supervise showers and pack up for another day. Most days by 3pm, my body has already punched its time clock. My health, my kids, my pets and my home are suffering. It is embarrassing. I won't even mention the issues with childcare in that no facilities are open past 6pm and I have to employ someone to pick up my kids and have them for 20 minutes - oh I wasn't going to mention that was I?

I have been plugging along this past year trying to make it work and it is obviously not. All you have to do is take one look at my house, my yard, my face. The last straw, and not the first time, was seeing my kids pick through the dirty clothes in the laundry room for something clean to wear to school. That's it. I'm done with this way of life before I get accused of neglecting my children.

I actually had the notion of applying for a part time position within the company but of course would lose my benefits. At one point I didn't even care - the extra time in every day to take care of myself, my family and my home sounded so delicious that I really truly didn't care. Then the cost of my medications smacked me in the face. Without coverage they cost more than I make working full time. So that idea is off the table. For now...

#2 sandra

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Posted 16 October 2009 - 04:41 AM

YOWZERS BAREFUT!
Ok calm down don't panic, you don't need more stress! Now heres an idea- Did you ask your Doctor to write a "Medical leave of absence" and apply through the company you work for? In canada I think they continue to pay you 75% of your wages for 1 year, hopefully someone else can add more facts on this.
Also here is another idea, its still work but at least your home with your children, phone people that have ads in the local paper that have child daycare in there home, get there daily rates, and you put an ad in the paper and do "In Home Daycare" I here there is good demand, I guess it depends where you live.. Say 7:30 am - 6:00 pm I would take 3 years and up- No diapers or lifting. They can bring thier own bagged lunch- and have a set "Quiet time around 1:00 put on a movie -close the curtains and relax for a while. Just a thought, I knew a friend who did this and she thought it would be alot of work and it was,nt so bad , the children played together usually all morning. Hmm just a thought.
I will keep my thinkin cap on for you
Sandra

#3 Buttons

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Posted 16 October 2009 - 04:51 AM

HI Barefoot

I really feel for you having too manage a long day at work & then having to do all the family based things as well it is not surprising that you are the end of your tether with work. I was in a similar position with work and they wouldn't make any kind of adjustments for me which eventually led me to being dismissed on capability grounds of ill health & then I fought back with the help of my union and won! This allowed me to go for IHR which I got 18 months ago. Are you in a union? They may be able to help you. I didn't think I had the fight in me but I did get through it. I hope you get things sorted out soon but do try to make a little time for your self even if it's just going for a nice warm soak in the bath which may help you to relax a little bit.
:flowers:
Thinking of You

Buttons

#4 scampie5

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Posted 16 October 2009 - 09:04 AM

HI Barefoot I had the same problem where I live in the uk
I rang my general practitioner who was appalled at the treatment I was getting. Because I was not giving up work completely, just wanting to reduce my hours, they could have got another part timer to take over the hours I did not want to do any more, or couldn't do is the right phrase. I did get the reduced hours but they made my life very difficult and even tried to get me to go completely. I got advice and stayed, then went when I felt I needed to. It is so sad that they do not understand. If I had cancer or something they new about it would be a different story even though I did try to get management to look it up but this never happened. In a way I feel let down but our illness. It is not well known and I struggle with this even though I tried to educate them on our condition but at the end of the day I feel they were not interested. They didn't understand the condition even with my web sites I gave them and information on paper because it was unheard of they were not interested. I hope you get on ok hugs Lynn

#5 janey

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Posted 16 October 2009 - 09:45 AM

Barefut,
It certainly sounds like a reasonable request to me. Based on the times that you mentioned (8:30 am to 6:15 pm) it sounds like your boss is already getting a good deal in working you more than 40 hours per week (if you work that 5 days/wk). If it is 5 days/wk, sounds like the company owes YOU. Based on the needs of your family and home, I wish you didn't have to work at all, but boy do we need those benefits. I was checking the drug insurance site yesterday and it stated that the insurance has paid $52,000 to date for my drugs. There's no way I could afford close to that!!!!

I hope you have a human in Human Resources that is willing to fight for you. Notes from your doctors is a good idea. I wish I could offer advice, but it appears that you are doing what I would do and fight using the ADA. It's there to help people like us! I've got all my fingers and toes crossed for you. Please let us know how things are going.

Big,big hugs,
Janey Willis
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#6 Amanda Thorpe

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Posted 16 October 2009 - 10:28 AM

Hello Barefut

When I've read your blog I have always been amazed at how much you actually do, you are incredibly tenacious and determined whether you feel it or not.

I am so sorry your employer is making things difficult for you, it's the last thing you need. I took IHL (ill health retirement) last year and had to wait for an outside agency to make their recommendation and I would have been devastated if after 20 years of service I would have ended up being fired rather than being pensioned off. Here you are trying to keep working and your employer is working against you rather than with you! It's such a short sighted approach.

You will have the fight in you and I hope you prevail making use of anyone you can whether HR or the ADA. If we here on this forum could fight for you we would.

Take care.
Amanda Thorpe
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#7 barefut

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Posted 18 October 2009 - 04:12 PM

Thank you all for your sympathetic stories and advice.

Sandra, you've seen right through me. Two years ago I had an in home preschool but had to close due to lack of enrollment. I'd love to be able to do that again but don't think I have that much energy in me.

Lyn - I am waiting to be dismissed on capability grounds myself! My brain refuses to function when I am exhausted.

Janey, They do shave my hours two days a week to avoid the overtime but instead of getting off early, I have to come in later. I get a day off mid week when I have to work a Saturday, which is nice.

Amanda, sometimes I get the feeling that my employer wants me to quit. I feel like a burden on them. And if I am approved to get off work at 3:30 then that means my co workers will have to close every night and then they will resent me. They resent me already just for asking.

#8 Sweet

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Posted 19 October 2009 - 11:45 AM

Hey Barefut,

Wow, I am so sorry. This sounds all to familiar to me. Went through the exact same thing myself. I was in an executive position however, so I knew it wouldn't be too hard for them to state "it was a hardship on the company". It got ugly, ugly enough I filed a discrimination lawsuit against them and won....It dragged on for 2 years. I understand the emotions and ENERGY that you DON'T have to deal with this. Sometimes you have to weigh that out. I just hate seeing stuff like this happen to people. It's down right ugly and companies should be ashamed of themselves.

Love ya
Warm and gentle hugs,

Pamela
ISN Support Specialist
International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

#9 barefut

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Posted 20 October 2009 - 06:09 PM

Thanks Sweet,

Meeting with HR and Compliance Rep tomorrow morning - debating if I should cry or not. Of course, I may not have a choice... :(

#10 Gidget

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Posted 21 October 2009 - 03:37 AM

Barefut,
Here is a suggestion -- Submit paperwork requesting FMLA (Family Medical Leave). Then for the 2 hours that you leave early each day, have it charged to FMLA. On the days you choose to not leave early, then your time would not need to be charged. Of course, the reason you are leaving 2 hours early is to take care of yourself -- don't say you need it to manage the household. I believe you are entitled by federal law to 8 weeks of FMLA leave every two years. In some states ie. Connecticut, you can take up to 16 weeks of FMLA leave. Your HR dept can give you this info or you can find it out by googling it for your state. The important thing to note, is that FMLA offers job security in that your employer cannot lay your off or should not lay you off while you are on FMLA. Hope this suggestion helps. I have a friend that uses FMLA to take her mom to dr's apptmts, etc.. and she uses it by the hour but then again, this is in CT where the rules or the corporation are more flexible. Good Luck. Gidget

#11 kellyA

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Posted 21 October 2009 - 03:21 PM

The same thing happened to me last year with work, last April to be exact I reduced my hours to 9 to 3, with a doctor's note stating that I could only work 6 hours a day 5 days a week. I first had to use all my sick, personal and vacation time, which got me through October. Starting November 1st I will be docked an hour everyday but it is so well worth it, my office is allowing this for 1 year, after that I need to make a decision either go back full time or retire (I have 25 years in but I'm only 43 years old) I will get full medical benefits for family but I will take a hit on my pension because of the age.

I have 2 kids ages 5 and 9, same situation homework, baths, soccer dance, etc. My husband owns his own business and he works 6 days a week over an hour away, so he is never home before 7:30 during the week and on weekends he works on Saturday.

Anyway my point being that your health is the most important thing, so if you need to cut hours do it. I'm not sure what I'm going to do come April 1st when I have to decide to retire or go back full time but in time the decision will come.

KellyA

#12 barefut

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Posted 23 October 2009 - 04:45 AM

Gidget and Kelly, you guys rock! I am going to use that idea.

Thank you so much!