Resources for Employees

Long-term illness can sometimes create friction with your employer. You may need to take frequent sick leave, or to work shorter or more flexible hours, or to have a phased return to work. Both spoonies and their employers may struggle to navigate the legal requirements in these areas.

In the worst cases, spoonies may experience discrimination at work as a result of their condition, either intentionally or through their employer's ignorance of the law.

 

There are many organisations that provide useful online resources, as well as telephone or face-to-face services. They may be able to give you advice, and to provide you with information to pass on to your employer. These are often free, but do check with the individual providers. Some veterinary organisations also provide services around employment advice. 

Citizens Advice

Citizens Advice provides general guidance on a huge variety of issues - most relevant for spoonies, they have advice on your rights at work, and on dealing with financial difficulties. There is a lot of online content, but they also have offer telephone advice, and have a physical presence in may towns and cities where you can go and speak to an advisor. 

The website should ask you where you live so the advice is correct for whichever part of the UK you live in. 

The Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS)

ACAS provide free advice on workplace relations and employment law.  The have a lot of information on their website, as well as materials to download and share with your employer. They can also help to resolve disputes at work if you're not able to come to an agreement with your employer. 

ACAS is for people living in England, Scotland and Wales; Northern Ireland has a separate organisation, the Labour Relations Agency. 

Fit For Work

Fit For Work is a government-funded website that offers Occupational Health advice, though it is only intended to supplement a formal assessment. They have online reading material, and offer direct advice via online chat, email or telephone.

If you live in Scotland, visit Healthy Working Lives.

gov.uk

The official UK government website https://www.gov.uk/ has in-depth information about the law, including areas surrounding employment and rights in the workplace. 

If you're in Scotland, visit https://www.gov.scot/, or in Northern Ireland, visit www.nidirect.gov.uk

The Health and Safety Executive

The Health and Safety Executive has guidance around sickness, absence from work and returning to work. This may be useful for spoonies to read, and pass on to their employer. 

Descriptions last updated: April 2019. Please see individual organisation websites for further details. Inclusion in this list should not be seen as an endorsement of any organisation.