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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 50148
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor
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Hi ben i have been forced to work in another department at

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Hi ben i have been forced to work in another department at work even thou my medical grounds state that i carn't do this type of job my headoffice have doctors note and are aware of what i can and carn't do, i suffer from chronic migraines,chronic fatigue,depression stress anxiety problems for years,i feel like my company are trying to push me out and really stressed as i used to love my job i work on tills for over 10 years but now have been forced to work in a very stressfull restaurant, i also can not stand for long periods and need access to a chair which i have on the main tills on shopfloor a job that i have been doing for over 10years, if you could give me some advice please as this making me stressed as i feel like i have no choice to hand in notice and don't want to lose the job i loved, plus also a carer to my dad and have stress at home looking after him. thank you.

Ben Jones : Hello, my name is XXXXX XXXXX it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. What is the reason for the medical grounds on which you are supposed to work in the current department?
JACUSTOMER-x9dz114o- :

Ben I have always worked on the main shop tills as have access to sitting down, my head office have note from my gp saying that I need to have access to a chair as find standing on my feet a long time makes my health suffer as suffer from chronic fatigue, and leads to migraines.?

JACUSTOMER-x9dz114o- :

i also suffer from stress and anxiety problems plus derpression and have to look after my elderly Dad when have been at work all day i work 30 hours a week i am a carer and he suffers from strokes copd, leukemia, is diabetic, and other things , i find it hard to work and then look after my dad when get in from work,was causeing me to get ill and have a lot off time of work, i dropped my hours at doctors request to 30 hours and with a chair have been able to do job without affecting my health and sickness levels have improved,since they have been forced to put me in restaurant i find it stressfull and is very busy and it is a job you need to be on your feet and at a fast pace.

Ben Jones :

Thanks for your patience. You are likely to have certain rights under disability discrimination legislation because you are likely to be classified as being 'disabled'. In the legal sense of the word, disability can have a broad meaning and there is no single list of medical conditions that qualify. Instead, to establish whether a person is disabled, they need to show that they meet the legal definition of a ‘disability’.


The Equality Act 2010 defines a disability as a “physical or mental impairment that has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on a person’s ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities”.


I will break this definition down:

  • Physical or mental impairment – this can include nearly any medical condition;

  • Substantial effect – the effect must be more than minor or trivial;

  • Long-term - the effect of the impairment must either have lasted or be likely to last for at least 12 months;

  • Normal day-to-day activities – these could include anything considered ‘normal’ in a person's normal daily routine (e.g. walking, driving, speaking, eating, washing, etc.)


If a person satisfies the above criteria, they will be classified as being disabled and will have automatic protection against discrimination, which means that they must not be treated unfavourably because of their disability. In addition, their employer would have a duty to make reasonable adjustments if they are likely to be placed at a substantial disadvantage when compared to non-disabled employees.


What amounts to ‘reasonable adjustments’ can have a wide interpretation and often depends on the individual circumstances. Below are some examples:

  • making adjustments to work premises;

  • allocating some of the employee’s duties to others;

  • transferring the employee to fill an existing suitable vacancy;

  • altering the employee’s hours of work;

  • allowing the employee to be absent during working hours for rehabilitation, assessment or treatment connected to their disability;

  • acquiring or modifying specialist equipment;

  • providing supervision or other support.


If someone who is disabled is being treated unfavourably because of their disability or their employer has failed to make reasonable adjustments it would potentially amount to disability discrimination. The first step would be to raise a formal grievance. The next step would be to consider whether a claim for disability discrimination should be made in an employment tribunal (the time limit for claiming is only 3 months from the date of the alleged discriminatory act taking place).

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