can a employer fire you knowing you have a disability

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can a employer fire you knowing you have a disability

i have stage four breast cancer and my employer wants to fire me because i cant work 12 hour shifts, they have known about my illness before i started to work for them,

Asked on November 11, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, Illinois

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

If the nature of your job to date has been that you have to work 12 hour shifts, then if you can't work them, they may fire you: while employers must make "reasonable accommodations" to employees with medical conditions, the employee must still be able to do his or her job and work all the hours normally required--a reasonable accommodation does not include letting you work less hours than the job requires.
But if you previously did not have to work 12-hour shifts, then they likely cannot terminate you if can't work enhanced or increased hours: it would very likely be viewed as illegal discrimination or harassment against an employee with a disability or medical condition to change the job to make it harder for her. In this case, you should speak to the federal EEOC or your state equal/civil rights agency about whether you can file a complaint.


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