Each year, almost 120,000 people of working age, are diagnosed with cancer in the UK, and with survival rates improving and people retiring later, this figure is set to rise. This is why Macmillan has developed workplace training, guidance and resources to support HR and Line Managers with managing cancer in the workplace.
For people with cancer, staying in or returning to work can be hugely positive. However, it can be difficult to know how to support someone with cancer, as there are a number of challenges they may face.
In the workplace, reasonable adjustments are often needed to help deal with the side effects of cancer and its treatment. Fatigue, pain and depression are some of the common side effects, so making reasonable adjustments such as flexible working and time off to attend medical appointments can make a big difference to someone affected by cancer. In addition as cancer is classed as a disability under the Equality Act or Disability Discrimination Act (DDA), employers are required to make reasonable adjustments if the location, working arrangements or a lack of extra support (auxiliary aids) puts someone with cancer at a substantial disadvantage.
It is important to remember that each person may require different support. So how can businesses equip HR professionals and line managers to provide the best individual support for staff they manage, while adhering to organisational policies?
Often one of the biggest concerns can be starting the initial conversation with the individual who has been diagnosed with cancer. Initiating conversations and keeping communication channels open are key steps in gaining an understanding of the individual needs and support required in the work place. It’s also important to discuss arrangements for keeping in touch with your employee before their absence, and to maintain appropriate contact with your employee during periods of sick leave.
Macmillan at Work
Macmillan at Work has been designed to help line managers, HR and Occupational Health professionals support employees with cancer, or those caring for someone with cancer.
If you are interested in attending their open workshop in Glasgow on Tuesday 15 March, email the team at: firstname.lastname@example.org
You can also book and find out more about additional expert training, guidance and resources Macmillan provides, by visiting macmillan.org.uk/atwork or by calling 020 7840 4725.