Maggie’s story

My name is Maggie, I am 46 years old, I work as a medical secretary and I suffer with endometriosis, fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue.

My mental and physical health had deteriorated over the last two years and I had been able to work from home due to the pandemic. My employer was putting pressure on me to work back in the office.

I tried to go back to working at the office and started to deteriorate further, and was suffering more pain and mental stress. I requested an occupational health review and I had already approached the GP for referrals back to gynaecology, pain management and talking therapies for support. However, despite the occupational health doctor’s advice that I should be able to continue working solely from home until I gained access to further treatment for my illness. My employer rejected their advice and continued to pressurise me.

Lorna helped me compose an email to my employer outlining the recommendations from occupational health and my rights under the Equality Act etc. She also helped me think about other jobs I would like to apply for working from home and helped me update and modify my CV. I generally found chatting with her about my problems very supportive.

I managed to resolve the issue with my workplace. I received a letter apologising for not being more understanding of my health conditions and neglecting to show their appreciation for the work that I do. They also outlined a plan going forward for monthly reviews with regards to health and workload, and have suggested a return to the office one day a week in the future. I updated my CV and started doing some training courses to better my skills for future employment from home.

My thanks goes to Lorna Carter the employment specialist who advised me. Lorna you truly are a lifesaver!

I urge anyone who is experiencing problems with their employment or employer to engage with the Work Well team. I found them extremely helpful and supportive, during an extremely difficult point in my life. I don’t know what I would have done without their support, as the whole situation was too overwhelming and challenging for me to deal with alone.

If you’re unemployed or having difficulties at work, support is available. Check if you’re eligible for employment support from Work Well.