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Jenny McKenzie
Jenny McKenzie,
Category: UK Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 6264
Experience:  10 Years of experience in Employment Law and HR
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I was absent through illness for three and half months at the

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I was absent through illness for three and half months at the beginning of this year. I returned to work before my consultant advised due to constant emails and texts from my employer asking how long I would be absent. During my illness I spent time in the High Dependancy Ward of my local hospital and then on an open ward, eventually convalescing at home for a few weeks.
During the whole of this time my employer sent several emails requesting information about the procedures of my job. He did not visit me in hospital or when I returned home.
My contract was not changed when I reduced my hours to part-time a few years ago and shows 22 days on full pay before SSP is used. This, my employer says, resulted in an overpayment to which I am not entitled and the days should have been pro-rata'd.
My Contract does not state that the monthly bonus I receive will not be paid, but he withheld this payment on the last month and half. He also paid an exemployee full bonus during her time on maternity leave being paid SMP - a precedent was set I feel.
I did 6.5 hours overtime on my return to work and he said he would pay for this and signed the time sheet. When he saw the salaries list he told me I had to get his permission before I did anymore overtime. This is the first time I have claimed overtime in the nine years we have been trading; although my working 50/60 hour weeks were frequent during the first couple of years since start up. He accused me of working the overtime unncessarily.
I pointed out a disparity in the leave of some staff including myself (recording this is my responsibility) and he accused me of trying to get myself an extra day's holiday.
I worked half of April and he agreed I should be paid 50% bonus. I have been preparing the bonus letter to the accountants every month for nine years for his signature and they have never been queried, simply accepted and signed. This time, however, he took the letter back to his desk to calculate that I had in fact halved the amount due to me. I feel these constant accusations of my 'trying to get something to which I am not entitled' are putting my integrity into question and this is disturbing after nine years of employment.
I am 65 years old and have been suffering from after-effects of Leukaemia.
Hello and welcome to Just Answer, do you feel that you have been treated differently because you have suffered from Leukemia?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
I feel I have been treated differently because I was absent from work for three and half months.
In 2012 I was having chemotherapy and took one week (3 working mornings) off due to ill effects and was paid in full plus bonus. I did, however, do my best to work extra hours to put things right and keep the job moving along.
was your recent time off connected with Leukemia or was it for a different reason?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Leukaemia diagnosed in 2010 - treated in 2012. End of 2012 left my immune system extremely weak. I caught a lung virus (which could have been fatal had I not been taken into hospital when I was). It was the treatment of this virus that kept me off work for so long.
ok thank you, XXXXX XXXXX be clear it was the fact that your immunity was low due to Leukemia which caused the virus to be so harmful to you? I am sorry for asking so many questions but this is important.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
No problem. Yes, this added to the chemotherapy, made me vulnerable and this virus took the three and half months to diagnose and treat.
Ok thank you. As a person with cancer (or who has suffered from cancer in the past) you are considered to be a disabled person for employment law purposes.

The significance of this is that it is unlawful for your employer to discriminated against you on the basis of your disability.

The way you have been treated due to your absence and events that have occurred after your return can be considered to amount to discrimination on the basis of your disability.

You have the right to raise a formal grievance about this and ask your employer to stop treating you like this and to clarify the situation with regards XXXXX XXXXX bonus and overtime. If your right to bonus and overtime has been effected by your time off for illness connected with leukemia then you have an argument that it would amount to a reasonable adjustment for you to be treated the same as others. This is particularly the case if a woman on maternity leave was treated more favorably.

Hopefully raising a grievance will help matters. If it does not you will be in your rights to bring a claim of discrimination in the employment tribunal. If your employer's treatment of you makes it difficult for you to continue working you may be able to resign and claim constructive dismissal.

If you have any further questions please ask. If i have answered your question i would be grateful if you would give my answer a positive rating.

Thank you and all the best.
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