Managing HIV Disease and Job Performance
Sep 16, 2012
My job has become increasingly stressful and demanding. I am getting depressed with managing my HIV, work and single parenthood. I finally applied for FMLA and since then my job has transferred me, given me more work to do and given me a bad evaluation surrounding incidents of my absence. What can I do to protect myself?
Response from Ms. Douaihy
Thank you for writing. I urge you to consult with an attorney as soon as possible to ensure your rights are protected. You can start your search for an attorney with the Legal Services Corporation (www.lsc.gov). LSC is the US government agency overseeing civil legal services provision for the disabled and poor. Depending on your circumstances, you may be able to consult with an attorney for free at an LSC funded local program.
Generally speaking, if your company has fifteen or more employees, you are entitled to protection from discrimination at your job along with remedies under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). You may also be entitled to a "Reasonable Accommodation", or a modification of your job in consideration of your HIV-related health limitations. In addition, depending on where you live, your state may have specific laws to protect workers who are HIV positive. Please check out an earlier post where I discuss, in detail, remedies for workplace discrimination against people living with HIV/AIDS.
Stay strong and good luck!
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