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eaglewoodwill

Starting New Job..Do I need to disclose?

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Recently diagnosed 10-17 with PD (left side stiffness, tremor and rigidity).  Began Azilect last Tues.  No relief or side effects to date.  I have started a new job and was wondering if anyone had any thoughts on disclosing my diagnosis to my new employer.  My symptoms are mild to date and as of this writing I need no special accommodations.  I work from home mostly.  the only accommodation I would like is the ability to take my walks and keep moving!  Thanks for your feedback.

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I would not disclose. Put yourself in your new employer's shoes. You've got a new employee who didn't disclose before he was hired and now is disclosing that he has a serious, incurable disease. That's going to sound like a huge liability to the employer. The easy thing for the employer to do is find a way to get rid of you.

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Since your symptoms are mild and you don't need any accommodations, there's no reason to disclose your condition. You may not need to do that  for years to come.

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There's no reason to disclose.  However, I did disclose during my interview for my new job and I felt better for doing it and less stressed.  However, it might depend on what type of job you are doing and what type of company you are joining.  I wrote about my experience here.  I still am glad I disclosed and really like my current boss all the more for his response when I did disclose and for his support since I hired on.

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unless it is effecting your work, no need to disclose. if your working from Home and no one ever sees you anyway, I wouldn't disclose anything unless it effects your work.

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I was in my new job for 10 months before I was diagnosed. Mind you, in those 10 months I had no clue what was wrong. When the diagnosis did come down I decided to keep it a secret. My first disclosure was a semi-official one to my manager, meaning that I kept HR out of the picture. This was to accommodate what I call "soft" requirements such as a more flexible work schedule. My next disclosure was to HR, this one being the official one that included a note from my doctor specifying my condition.

 

That's where I am at - 6 years after being diagnosed. I am not sure what's next but my main challenge today is keeping up with the pace at work. I have monthly meetings with my manager - this is where I try and communicate my needs and challenges.

 

- marc

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Not all managers are understanding. Mine told me if I couldn't get the job done, maybe I should be looking for another job (a totally illegal and insensitive thing to say to someone who has just disclosed a debilitating illness). I believe HR is the best route to take, because they know the laws protecting you and, unless they want to invite a lawsuit, would never violate the Americans with Disabilities Act. I've heard some sad stories about folks who waited too long to disclose and lost their jobs because of poor performance issue.

 

Another benefit to official disclosure is that it establishes clearly that there may be a need for accommodation now or later. As things progress, this documentation will become essential in establishing criteria for disability both from the employer and Social Security Disability Insurance. Documentation of how your condition affects your ability to work may make approval more swift when that time comes. It's an uphill battle without good documentation. 

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Not all managers are understanding. Mine told me if I couldn't get the job done, maybe I should be looking for another job (a totally illegal and insensitive thing to say to someone who has just disclosed a debilitating illness). I believe HR is the best route to take, because they know the laws protecting you and, unless they want to invite a lawsuit, would never violate the Americans with Disabilities Act. I've heard some sad stories about folks who waited too long to disclose and lost their jobs because of poor performance issue.

 

Another benefit to official disclosure is that it establishes clearly that there may be a need for accommodation now or later. As things progress, this documentation will become essential in establishing criteria for disability both from the employer and Social Security Disability Insurance. Documentation of how your condition affects your ability to work may make approval more swift when that time comes. It's an uphill battle without good documentation.

 

Boy... If I had a supervisor that said something that nasty, I'd knock him out the day they walked me out. "Oops! Myclonic jerk!". Haha.

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I disclosed at work, but I have been there 10 years and knew the people I work with. I disclosed because I am more comfortable, and less stressed, having people understand why they get emails from me at 3:00AM, why I leave the office every day by 3:00 PM, why I am shakey sometimes, etc. In other words, I disclosed for my reasons, not anyone elses.

 

If I were in your situation I would not disclose unless it becomes necessary to do so. Necessary should be defined by your needs, unless your condition affects the safety or performance of others, or the lack of knowledge could hurt your employer.

 

To me this really is a very individual choice. If I were interviewing for work now I would probably disclose in the interview. I would do so because I need some special accomodations, because I want to be comfortable advocating for PD sufferers, because I am less stressed when people understand the reason for some of my symptoms, and because I would not want to work with people who can't deal with me

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I had been on my job for years and refused to tell them at first.  When the trembling was really bad I told the person I was working with on the project that I was in the process of being diagnosed but they didn't know what it was.  My friend who works for a disability attorney said that I should tell them because if my performance should suffer and they called me in to fire me because of it that at that point it is too late to tell them and they can still fire me.  I have to put them on notice that I have the disease so that if my performance suffers they can work with me to fix the problem if possible.  Thank goodness I don't have to look for a new job - although my job consolidated with the branch in New York and I now have to commute 2 hours a day longer - I had to go with them because I have PD.  I need the insurance.  I didn't want to have to take the chance of working with someone new because that is even more stressful.  If I had changed positions I would definitely tell the employer of my disability (if asked) (don't ask don't tell).  I don't think I would want to lie.  But on the other hand the thing is that the meds work so well only I know that I am having troubles.   Oh, well not going to discuss here - that is another post LOL 

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