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UK employers have legal obligations to cancer patients

Publish date: 11 April 2018
Issue Number: 231
Diary: Legalbrief Workplace
Category: Health

More than half (53%) of employees in the UK living with cancer do not know that their employer has a legal obligation to make reasonable adjustments for them to return to work, according to Macmillan Cancer Support in a Personnel Today report. The charity urged employers to be prepared properly to support staff through cancer by offering them flexible working arrangements and time off for medical appointments. According to Macmillan’s estimations, the number of working-age people with cancer increased by almost 10% to 890 000 between 2010 and 2015, with around 80 000 more people aged 16–65 living with the disease in 2015 than in 2010. According to the YouGov survey of 1 000 cancer patients commissioned by the charity, around one-fifth (18%) of people who returned to work after their diagnosis claimed they had been discriminated against by their employer. Liz Egan, the charity’s lead on its Working Through Cancer programme, urged employers to stay aware of their obligations under the Equality Act and ensure they had policies in place to support their staff.

Full Personnel Today report