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Talking to your employer

You don’t have to tell anyone about your blood cancer diagnosis, but by talking to your employer, they can take steps to help you throughout your treatment and your return to work. Here we have some advice on how to approach this.

You may find it hard to talk to your employer, especially if you have fears of being treated differently to your colleagues. You may not want to answer any questions people may ask you or you may be scared that you will need to take time off to attend appointments. You may even have fears that you could lose your job.

If you have been diagnosed with a blood cancer, The Equality Act of 2010 automatically protects you against any form of discrimination at different points of work such as the recruitment process, the terms of your work and the opportunities for promotion and training because of your cancer. During your cancer journey, talking to your employer and making them aware of your diagnosis means they can take steps to support you such as letting you take time off work for any appointments, or adapting your working environment to help you carry on working if this is what you decide to do.

Most employers will be sympathetic but it is important to know that they may not know exactly the right way to support you, so you should always try to let them know exactly what you need or they may ask your permission to contact a medical professional to give them guidance.


Published: Feb 2016

Next planned review: Feb 2018