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What to do about a mental health issue at work

| Jun 20, 2019 | Americans With Disabilities Act |

Some people in the Houston area who face mental health crises might wonder whether they should share any information about it with an employer. One man who did so was a professor at the University of North Carolina, and his department head had a degree in counseling. In that situation, his supervisor was supportive, but this is not always the case.

According to the American Psychological Association, three-fourths of employees say their boss is the most stressful element of their job. Other studies show that the main reason people leave their jobs is because of an unreasonable boss. In a situation like this, the employer might not be understanding. SurveyMonkey conducted a study that found that over half of employees said they went to work even when they needed a mental health day. Just under one-third of employees said they did not trust leadership in their workplace, and two-thirds of employees said they were looking for a new job.

Unfortunately, some people may find that they are struggling to function at work at all. Having a supervisor’s support could help in these situations. Employees struggling with mental health issues are generally protected under the Americans With Disabilities Act, and employers are supposed to offer reasonable accommodation. However, what constitutes “reasonable” may be decided by a manager.

People who believe they are facing discrimination in the workplace because of a disability, including not being offered reasonable accommodation, may want to consult an attorney. The attorney may be able to explain whether the employer’s actions constitute discrimination and what the employee should do. This could include documenting any comments or actions and reviewing the employee handbook for information on how to report discrimination. If going through workplace channels is unsuccessful, the employee might want to file a claim with the EEOC or the appropriate state agency.

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