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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 50147
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor
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It is employment law

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I suffer from anxiety and depression, and have been told by my doctor and psychotherapist that I am unable to work night shifts....

I set a letter to my employer for a request for reasonable adjustment under the disability act as I was advised to do.....

Are they obligated to make said adjustments and if they don't what is the next course of action I can take.

Hello, my name is ***** ***** it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. are they actually able to make these adjustments?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

For Ben Jones

I work for an offshore oil drilling company, I can see no reason why they couldn't that I am aware of they have personal that work strictly days. we work 12 hour shifts 7 days a week for the full 21 days we are on the rig. I am flying out to the rig working 21 straight nights and flying back home. AS stated my doctors don't feel as though I am suited for that shift pattern based on what has happened, I have been with this company for about a year and 5months, and have worked the oil patch for the past 5 plus years

If an employee is classified as disabled then under the Equality Act 2010 the employer has a strict duty to make reasonable adjustments if the employee is going to be placed at a disadvantage when compared to non-disabled employees.
What amounts to ‘reasonable adjustments’ can have a wide interpretation and often depends on the individual circumstances of the employer, their business, the potential impact on other employees, the available resources, etc. Whilst legislation does not currently provide specific examples of what adjustments can be made, the following are examples that have been considered reasonable in case law over time:
• 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.
Whether the adjustments can be implemented depends on whether they are considered reasonable in the circumstances and the employer is actually able to introduce them. However, the test is rather strict and it would take quite a lot for the employer to be able to claim an adjustment is not reasonable.
If the employer fails to implement an adjustment which is considered reasonable then the affected employee has a couple of options:
• first they can raise a formal grievance with the employer
• I the grievance fails and there is no progress then they can consider making a claim for disability discrimination in the employment tribunal, although the time limit for doing so is quite tight (3 months from the alleged discriminatory act)
• If things are really bad and the employee feel they can no longer continue working there because of this then they could also resign and consider a claim for constructive dismissal.
An alternative way out is to approach the employer on a 'without prejudice' basis (i.e. off the record) to try and discuss the possibility of leaving under a settlement agreement. Under a settlement agreement, the employee gets compensated for leaving the company and in return promises not to make any claims against the employer in the future. It is essentially a clean break, although the employer does not have to agree to it so it will be subject to negotiation. In any event, there is nothing to lose by raising this possibility with them because you cannot be treated detrimentally for suggesting it and it would not be used against you.
I hope this has answered your query. Please take a second to leave a positive rating, or if you need me to clarify anything before you go - please get back to me and I will assist further as best as I can. Thank you
Ben Jones and 2 other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

For Ben Jones

I feel that after the meeting today that I was basic told like it or lump it.

Does my own GP have to issue a letter clarifying that I do indeed have this disability, as they have stated that the occupational Health doctor never stated it.

Can I raise a grievance

What point do I elevate it to a grievance and can it be held against me

To be classified as disabled you do not require any confirmation or certificate from a doctor, although if they confirm that they believe you are disabled it would help in making the position clearer with the employer.
To b disabled you simply need to meet the definition of it in The Equality Act 2010, which 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.)
You can raise a grievance at any time although it is best to do so once you have formal notification or indication that the adjustments have been rejected. It cannot beheld against you as it would otherwise amount to victimisation.
If your original question has been answered I would be grateful if you could please quickly rate my answer - it only takes a second to do and is an important part of our process. I can still answer follow up questions afterwards if needed. Thank you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

FOr Ben Jones

This is a silly question

How do I raise a grievance, as I feel that this is my only avenue, and in doing so do I run the risk of ostracising myself, or painting a big target on my chest, because I feel i won't be able to return.

No silly questions here ... A grievance is raised simply by writing to your employer (usually the line manager) and setting out your complaint and that you wish to raise a grievance about it