Mental Health and Discrimination

Got a problem with your workplace or one of your colleagues? Thrash it out here.
Forum rules
NEW USERS HAVE TO WAIT FOR THEIR FIRST POSTS TO BE APPROVED BY AN ADMINISTRATOR. Rules | Essential Information | FAQ | Support | Twitter

Mental Health and Discrimination

Postby highlandcow » Wed Aug 01, 2012 8:59 pm

As some of you know, my doctor has recently put me on anti-depressants.

My Dad isn't happy with me having to take them and wants me to stop taking them (not because he's a terrible father, or that he doesn't care, but he's a doctor himself and doesn't like that they are so readily given out).

He told me today that if my work found out I was on them, I could be discriminated against. I said to him that it's stupid for employers to have that sort of attitude when it's common knowledge that 1 in 3 people will suffer with some form of depression and/or anxiety at some point in life.

Is this true? Will I be in for unfair treatment if my work, or future employers find out?
Go to Glasgow at least once in your life and have a roll and square sliced sausage and a cup of tea. When you feel the tea coursing over your spice-singed tongue, you'll know what I mean when I say:
'It's good to be alive!'"

- Billy Connolly
User avatar
highlandcow
Permanent Fixture
Permanent Fixture
 
Posts: 1008
Joined: Fri Nov 14, 2008 9:22 pm
Location: Glasgow, Scotland
Gender: Female

Re: Mental Health and Discrimination

Postby mattmxl » Thu Aug 02, 2012 8:59 am

Largely depends on what your boss is like. They signed me off on the sick for a fortnight a couple of years ago and stuck me on the happy pills, work were far from impressed due to the workload they had on at that time, despite the fact that the doctor put the cause of the problem down to work.

The head boss (I have about three due to the unique way the company is run) really wasn't happy but then again he was a massive bully to everybody below him anyway, so this was to be expected. But the general attitude of the place was "you've had a fortnight off at a busy time, get pulling twice your weight now" despite the fact I was still taking the tablets. He saw them as a cry-off from work and as a result he made my working life that little bit harder.

The funniest moment came when, despite the doctors note I'd handed in and the occupational health nurses opinion that I should be on lighter duties for the first few months of my return, in his words, "as far as I'm concerned, you're fully recovered now and will return to full duties". The counsellor I was seeing at the time (employed by the company I work for) went absolutely ape when I told her he'd said that. The root cause of it being a huge ignorance to the problems of mental health and the fact that he thought he knew better than trained medical professionals.

Basically, there is an ignorance out there regarding people with "mental health issues" amongst some people, some of which are in high up places in a company. There could be some indirect discrimination occur if say you are contesting for a promotion at the moment and the company think that you're not capable of the increase workload because you are taking anti-depressants. At the end of the day, the company is there to turn over a profit and you as an employee are readily dispensable in the current market. This doesn't leave a lot of ground for compassion. Of course, I could just work for a particularly unpleasant company (a view held by a lot of employees here).

They shouldn't discriminate and actually have a duty of care to help you if you are struggling within reason, but unfortunately it does go on, sometimes without them even knowing they're doing it. But I'd still keep taking them, their benefits for your health far outweigh any problems that might be caused for your work.
mattmxl
Familiar Face
Familiar Face
 
Posts: 306
Joined: Thu Apr 09, 2009 12:53 pm
Gender: Male

Re: Mental Health and Discrimination

Postby Bel Bel » Thu Aug 02, 2012 12:34 pm

I just wouldn't tell them
Life is for living so live it to the fullest

Cheap Pandora Charms UK

User avatar
Bel Bel
Fully Fledged Flatmate
Fully Fledged Flatmate
 
Posts: 6758
Joined: Thu May 10, 2007 1:58 pm
Location: Hertfordshire
Gender: Female

Re: Mental Health and Discrimination

Postby highlandcow » Thu Aug 02, 2012 6:11 pm

Bel Bel wrote:I just wouldn't tell them


I'm tempted to just do that to be honest and I said that to my Dad but he said that you have to declare things like that when you apply to places...but I don't know if most places would go to all the bother of checking up with your doctor, unless you do a "specialist" job.

Some people do know at work but my boss has been very sympathetic about what's been doing on that has prompted this so I don't think he would personally have a problem. You just never know though...

mattmxl wrote:The head boss (I have about three due to the unique way the company is run) really wasn't happy but then again he was a massive bully to everybody below him anyway, so this was to be expected. But the general attitude of the place was "you've had a fortnight off at a busy time, get pulling twice your weight now" despite the fact I was still taking the tablets. He saw them as a cry-off from work and as a result he made my working life that little bit harder.


That's terrible! I don't think I'd want to have a job like that!
Go to Glasgow at least once in your life and have a roll and square sliced sausage and a cup of tea. When you feel the tea coursing over your spice-singed tongue, you'll know what I mean when I say:
'It's good to be alive!'"

- Billy Connolly
User avatar
highlandcow
Permanent Fixture
Permanent Fixture
 
Posts: 1008
Joined: Fri Nov 14, 2008 9:22 pm
Location: Glasgow, Scotland
Gender: Female

Re: Mental Health and Discrimination

Postby rufio89 » Fri Aug 03, 2012 9:16 am

I have never once been asked what medication I'm on when I've started at a new place!
rufio89
Taken Root
Taken Root
 
Posts: 2565
Joined: Mon Aug 04, 2008 1:05 pm
Location: Nottingham
Gender: Female

Re: Mental Health and Discrimination

Postby Bel Bel » Fri Aug 03, 2012 10:00 am

We have a standard medical quationnaire to ensure people only work in suitable evironments as we do some manufacturing. You can't have some one who is epilectic working with certain equipment fro instance.

I think it is relevant in certain jobs but if you just do an average office job I can't see it being a concern.

The other thing is if you don't declare and have an accident the company may try to get out of liability (if it's their fault).

You are not allowed to access someones medical records without their consent in writing.

Obviosuly if you are not looking for another job at present it isn't relevant anyway and you may not still be on them by the time you look for something else.

I wouldn't worry about it until you need to.
Life is for living so live it to the fullest

Cheap Pandora Charms UK

User avatar
Bel Bel
Fully Fledged Flatmate
Fully Fledged Flatmate
 
Posts: 6758
Joined: Thu May 10, 2007 1:58 pm
Location: Hertfordshire
Gender: Female

Re: Mental Health and Discrimination

Postby highlandcow » Fri Aug 03, 2012 4:58 pm

Cheers guys.

I think it was just my Dad making a fuss about nothing.
Go to Glasgow at least once in your life and have a roll and square sliced sausage and a cup of tea. When you feel the tea coursing over your spice-singed tongue, you'll know what I mean when I say:
'It's good to be alive!'"

- Billy Connolly
User avatar
highlandcow
Permanent Fixture
Permanent Fixture
 
Posts: 1008
Joined: Fri Nov 14, 2008 9:22 pm
Location: Glasgow, Scotland
Gender: Female


Return to Work & Colleagues

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests