Discrimination In The Workplace Due To Mental Illness

BY: Koszdin | Saturday, September 1, 2018.

Mental illness is a very serious matter that affects many people today. It can very emotional and impact all aspects of your life. It’s still stigmatized in the world we live in today. People don’t know much about it and have false beliefs about it. Your mental health may be affecting you in the workplace. This is important because it involves your income and somewhere that you spend most of your time at. You shouldn’t have to suffer in silence. Your employer should be accommodating to your mental illness. For example, you should be able to have leave time just as any other illness. It’s also tough to decide whether you want to even disclose your illness to your employer. Whatever the case may be, you still have rights and can bring upon a mental health claim. A woman came forward recently about her mental health and how it has impacted her in the workplace.

Her First Diagnosis

It was in 2016 when Michelle Lewis was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. She was called into a meeting at work after she was released from the clinic. She felt that she could be honest with her employer. So she told them how she was seeing a psychologist and a psychiatrist once a month for her mental illness. The reaction she received was not what she expected. She was told that she should resign and that her work was no longer up to par (even though there were no issues before that). Eventually, Lewis was forced to resign as the company began treating her differently.

Discrimination Against Mental Illness

Mental illness is one of the ways in which you can be discriminated against in the workplace. Mental illness is still very stigmatized today as many people do not understand it and how it works. Many see mental illness as a “character flaw” or a “sign of weakness”. A survey was conducted and found that 57.8% of those with mental illness would not tell their employer about their illness. This is because of the fear of discrimination like what Lewis had to go through.

Human Resource Standpoint

From an HR standpoint, you should never be asked about mental illness during your job interview. It is a protected characteristic similar to pregnancy. You are not required to disclose this information to your employer. Mental illness has been difficult for managers to grasp. It is an ongoing issue verses something that has an end time such as having strep throat. Having a mental illness can make work harder if you are already struggling at work. Managers have been learning more about mental illness and how they can support it.

Suffering from a mental illness is tough. Sometimes you may have to bring a claim. Insurance companies often think that you are just trying to find a reason to be out of work. It’s unfair. You deserve someone to fight for you to get your claim approved. You need someone with experience and expertise in mental health claims. The Law Offices of Koszdin, Fields & Sherry have been working on cases like yours since 1955. When looking for a Van Nuys mental health claim attorney, we will be a good match in providing you the expertise to help you get through this hard time. Schedule a free initial consultation using the contact form or by calling us at 818-812-5639 or 800-747-3447. Se Habla español.

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