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How/when Should You Request Accomodations?

job accomodations narcolepsy

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#1 Guest_tabster1_*

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Posted 28 June 2013 - 02:31 PM

I'm graduating from college in a year so it's a ways off but I was wondering, if you need accomdations, how and when do you request them? When they offer you the job? After it's been a few days? I don't really know how I will handle working - I'm in school right now and I need a nap most days, even though I'm in class I guess around 3-4 hours a day (unless my schedule sucks).

 

If you need a nap, where are you supposed to go? I also don't drive, so I can't just go out to my car like I know some people do.

 

I would most likely be working in a vet clinic which also kinda limits stuff I feel like, they wouldn't want a client to walk by and see one of the workers asleep. If they can't grant you that, what should you ask for instead? I'm pretty sure there is no way in heck I will tell them about my cataplexy, they will see it as a liability even though it pretty much only happens when I laugh. 



#2 Hank

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Posted 28 June 2013 - 03:11 PM

I have just gone through this an have some good references for you. I don't have the time to put them all down now. In case I do not remember to do it, please send me a message to remind me. It has helped me a lot with a good outcome.

#3 louie

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Posted 29 June 2013 - 07:45 AM

I would not discuss accommodations until after you are officially hired. Then, ask for what you need. The human resources people will guide you through the process. Understand you might be required to disclose a lot of medical information and have the support of a treating physician. You may be denied the accommodation. Or, your employer might just grant the accommodation right away. Its not guaranteed to be an easy or comfortable process.

#4 Hank

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Posted 29 June 2013 - 12:03 PM

I'm graduating from college in a year so it's a ways off but I was wondering, if you need accomdations, how and when do you request them? When they offer you the job? After it's been a few days? I don't really know how I will handle working - I'm in school right now and I need a nap most days, even though I'm in class I guess around 3-4 hours a day (unless my schedule sucks).
 
If you need a nap, where are you supposed to go? I also don't drive, so I can't just go out to my car like I know some people do.
 
I would most likely be working in a vet clinic which also kinda limits stuff I feel like, they wouldn't want a client to walk by and see one of the workers asleep. If they can't grant you that, what should you ask for instead? I'm pretty sure there is no way in heck I will tell them about my cataplexy, they will see it as a liability even though it pretty much only happens when I laugh.


http://askjan.org/
The Job Accommodation Network is a great resource. I just spoke with them the other day. I left a message and a very knowledgeable person called me back. She helped me refine my questions and clarify the process. When I spoke with my company's HR person, I was clear and concise about what I was requesting.

I highly recommend speaking with them.

#5 NforNicole

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Posted 09 July 2013 - 03:04 PM

The ADA states that if you have a diagnosis you have to disclose your disorder before being hired otherwise they can refuse just on the basis that you didn't let them know. I don't believe that it means you have to tell them in the interview process but  can wait to as far as the actual job offer. I would do it that way because at that point you know you are the most qualified person for the job and know that you aren't being discriminated against.

 

This question and answer below came directly from the ADA website. I will try to find more information but it is all out there on their (the ADA) site or  JAN

 

When is an employer required to make a reasonable accommodation?

An employer is only required to accommodate a "known" disability of a qualified applicant or employee. Thus, in most circumstances, it is the responsibility of the employee to request the reasonable accommodation.



#6 ApparentlyNarcoleptic

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 12:56 PM

I've been looking around about this since receiving my N diagnosis a few months ago.  It seems to me that it's really an individual thing - how your N and/or C affect you, whether you have any environmental or prescription aids to help with your symptoms, what kind of accommodations you would need, what your profession is, and where you work.  So many factors!  I myself have been debating telling HR at my job more as a precaution than anything else.  I have a unique situation.  I am a special education teacher and work primarily with preschoolers in their home.  My hours are on a case-to-case basis and I work out my schedule each year with parents based on everyone's availability.  I drive to each location.  It's a very different situation from working in an office type setting.  My current issue is that I feel like my N symptoms have been getting worse - some of it is definitely because of medication (bad stuff going on with me and Nuvigil, not yet regulated on Xyrem).  Thank goodness my schedule is kind of thin for the summer session - but come September and future school years I'm very concerned.  The nature of my position within the company also works in a different way so if I did need some sort of accommodation at some point I don't know that it would even work.  It's easiest to think of me as a per diem employee - I don't work, I don't get paid.  I don't have sick days, vacation days, I don't get paid for built in school breaks, etc.  I believe that we're finally eligible to be covered by disability if needed, but I'm not 100% on that.  At this point I'm worried that if I don't tell them, and then something comes up, I'll be screwed.  I'm also worried that if I do tell them I'll be viewed differently and be assigned less cases or something else will go wrong.  I just don't know what to do because of the nature of my position.  I keep teetering between decisions and ultimately can't seem to make up my mind!



#7 Hank

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Posted 12 July 2013 - 02:02 PM

Your HR only needs to know the accommodation you are requesting. They do not need to know your diagnosis.

I have an accommodation that allows me to conduct business air travel the evening before, rather than the morning of a meeting.

I have an accommodation that allows for a 5 second pause when I am presenting. And allows me to sit down for 1 minute while presenting.

I had found that when I am presenting to a group, sometimes C will cause my speech to hesitate. That is minor to me, but was perceived by some as lack of preparation. So, now I am covered.

I highly recommend speaking with JAN (Job Accommodation Network) email link above. I discussed my situation with a very helpful person and learned a lot. I was much better prepared when speaking with my HR.

#8 jennel

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Posted 20 July 2013 - 12:34 PM

I have a good job with a large corporation but I'm a little concerned about the leave I've needed to take in the sense of - I am protected as long as I don't exhaust my FMLA, however, one thing I've learned with this very large company is that it pretty much boils down to what your last boss said about you when you decide you want to transfer to a new position. I know the position I'm in now will dry up in the next couple of years and I'm cool with that as there is a large presence by this company in my geographic location (have had other positions dry up as a lot of the initiatives are constantly changing and teams may only exist for a few years). 

 

I thought getting on the Xyrem I could do a more normal work schedule, but I start to wonder if I wouldn't be better trying a slightly later start time. I received permission to do a 9:30 a.m. - 6:30 p.m. schedule until I got adjusted on the med. Most of my team actually works a 10 a.m. - 7 p.m. schedule, however, the executives that I primarily work with are closer to the generic 8-5. My manager has said he feels anything up to arriving by 9:00 a.m. is okay and while I have permission to take naps at the office's wellness center, the truth is I can't sleep without my C-Pap machine and I'm just not gonna haul that around all the time.

 

Hank you sound like you're in a professional environment as well. Any tips other than JAN? Or anyone working in the 8-5 office environment...I really enjoy what I do and I feel like I'm good at it. I've got almost 15 years in my line of work and would like to continue to excel. I talked about a situation in another thread where this gal offered to be my mentor. I don't really like her much but she's very good at her job and well -connected. I avoid playing politics as much as I can, but it is sometimes a necessary evil. So, I started meeting with her but then had to go out on leave. When I ran into her in the cafeteria I explained I was dealing with some health issues and as soon as I was stable I would reconnect with her.

 

When we met she recommended some books which I purchased. She then instructed that I read a chapter a night. Now, I know that the reality of that occurring is unlikely as I don't know from day to day whether I'll have that kind of energy. When I started to try to tell her this, she cut me off and said, Hey, I've been a single mother working two jobs, so don't tell me you can't do this.

 

She is not somebody who I would expect to have the patience to even begin to understand narcolepsy and honestly, I'm not sure that I want her to know as I don't want the possibility of her telling someone that I have it and having that information potentially deny me a position down the road.

 

Any tips on how to negotiate someone like this? I do appreciate some of her advice and some of the relationship issues have nothing to do with narcolepsy and everything to do with her being a bit of a bossy know it all! Ha!



#9 jennel

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Posted 20 July 2013 - 12:39 PM

Also - does anyone know if narcolepsy is considered a disability by the ADA? My dr said no, but then I see similarities drawn to MS which I know is covered by the ADA, as my mother had to go through that process to save her job. Sadly while she still has a job, she actually is given very little responsibility. She becomes so easily confused and with changing computer systems etc. can't keep up. 



#10 exanimo

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Posted 22 July 2013 - 05:02 AM

Ada does not have any specific conditions that it covers - there is no list. But there are many that commonly covered. Basically you just have to prove to them that it is a chronic disease affecting your quality if life and that it is severe enough to warrant you coverage under ADA.

#11 Hank

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Posted 22 July 2013 - 09:05 AM

I would say something like this in a corporate environment regarding reading the chapters of those books:

"I value your recommendations on these books and I look forward to reading them. I take my commitments seriously and value my commitments. At this time, I am not able to commit to a nightly reading schedule. When my health concerns are better managed, I am prepared to make that commitment. In the mean time, I greatly appreciate your interest and willingness to mentor me. I look forward to following up with you".

 

I try to underpromise and over deliver.

 

Then, when she is expecting nothing from you, I would make sure I read even one chapter a week. When you tell her what you gained from that chapter, she will probably be pleasantly surprised.

 

So, if she is expecting 5 chapters and you give her 3, she will view you negatively. If she is expecting 0 chapters and you give her 1, she will likely view you positively.

 

As far as ADA, you do have a medical reason for accommodation. This is different from proving Social Security Disability- in which case N needs to be compared to other illnesses like Epilepsy. In a work setting, you have medical cause. I have been through it with a global corporation.

 

JAN was very helpful in being a sounding board, so when I had conversations with HR, I knew what I was talking about and my thoughts were refined.

 

I have found it veeeerrry important to be proactive with all this- I need to own it. If I do not define myself and my limitations (proactive), other people will define me (reactive)- and that is where it gets messy. When I am reactive, it becomes a mess fast- I am not happy and they are not happy. When I am proactive, I am more in control and others follow that lead.



#12 louie

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Posted 06 August 2013 - 06:47 PM

I question the statement that the ADA requires disclosure of diagnosis when applying for a job. Can you back that up with any quotes from the ADA?

#13 louie

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Posted 06 August 2013 - 06:52 PM

I just googled "must a job applicant disclose a disability" and every hit said no. This site is the department of labor and quite clearly states it's up to the applicant.www.dol.gov/odep/pubs/fact/ydw.htm

#14 Hank

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Posted 07 August 2013 - 10:37 AM

Correct- you do not have to disclose your diagnosis unless you choose to do so.

However, you do need a doctors letter describing your limitations and what accommodations you require.

The accommodations can be an interactive process between doctor, patient/employee and employer- and the ADA does not tell people exactly what to do. Everyone has to figure that out for themselves.

An employer cannot ask you your diagnosis, but you can offer as much or little detail as you feel comfoortable.

I hope this helps.





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