I have fibromyalgia & am currently on jobseekers allowance

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I have fibromyalgia & am currently on jobseekers allowance

Postby pollyb02 » Sun Feb 19, 2012 10:56 pm

I had to write this! I gave up work in 2010 when diagnosed with fibromyalgia and i also have a son with aspergers.
I have had to come off income support and gp onto jobseekers allowance as my son is now 9.
I have told them i am limited on what i can do due to my illness and have to fit my hours around my son as i cant put him into any form of child care.
They have told me that this will not be taken into account, regarding my sons issues! Its tough basicly! and if i refuse to take a job that doesnt suit! then i will lose all benefits! and when attending interviews, DO NOT inform employers of my fibromialgia as they will not employ me!!!
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Re: I have fibromyalgia & am currently on jobseekers allowance

Postby chrisgoneferal » Sun Feb 19, 2012 11:04 pm

Employers are unlikely to employ you with fibromyalgia...however if the application form ask you if you are in good health and you lie an the suffer any injury or work related illness you would be deemed to be at fault for lying about your condition.

I suggest you ask for that advice to be given to you in writing and publish it on this site so publicity can be generated for the dangerous advice given to you. I tell employers the truth when they give me the medical form and can't get a job..this is because what an employer regards as disable is at such variance to the government's standard......there is no easy answer to this but exposing and campaigning against obvious injustice.

The government believes that by declaring people fit they are cured....or does it really...actually it just wants to save money..by punishing vulnerable people for things they cannot help having.

Get that advice in writing.

All the best

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Re: I have fibromyalgia & am currently on jobseekers allowance

Postby loubie » Sun Feb 19, 2012 11:13 pm

hi polly
welcome to the forum

i can't advise you on any of your benefits but one thing i do know is
that not telling an employer of an illness you lie in your application
and fibro comes under disability :roll:
i can't believe they told you that :nono:

have you been to cab ? perhaps they could help

good to have you with us :wave:
loubie xx

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Re: I have fibromyalgia & am currently on jobseekers allowance

Postby bekwey » Sun Feb 19, 2012 11:14 pm

gosh, that is harsh and seems so unfair! :( At my back to work interview the advisor agreed I couldn't be expected to do more than 16 hours anyway as I had fibro. After that I had the Atos and was put on to ESA. Surely if you lie on an application form you can be caught out! It will be so obvious to any employer that you are not as fit as others- I think that is disgusting, and actually they are asking you to commit fraud!! I would go over their heads and speak to a manager! I don't know if your son is grounds enough for ESA, so maybe keep him out of the equation for the moment, just concentrate on your illness. That 's all I can say apart from good luck and don't let the b******s grind you down! :) :fingerscrossed: :hugs:
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Re: I have fibromyalgia & am currently on jobseekers allowance

Postby Ldyalb » Mon Feb 20, 2012 12:03 am

It has been illegal since the Equality Act 2010 came into force on 1 October 2010 for an employer to ask you about your health, or how many sick days you have had in the past. If they do it's just like being a young woman at interview being asked 'do you plan to have babies soon?' - you decline to answer. The Equality Act also considers disability discrimination by association - i.e. you can't discriminate against someone because they care for a disabled person, or are generally associated with a disabled person.

You are under no legal obligation to disclose a disability prior to being offered a job. There are two buts though;

1) In a few relatively rare cases you may be obliged to disclose if you would pose a significant health and safety risk. So if you had Epilepsy and had seizures every other day, and worked as a builder then you would probably be obliged to disclose to your employer so that you could be kept off ladders.

2) You are only legally entitled to Reasonable Adjustments in the workplace if you disclose PRIOR to being offered the job. Now most employers will put adjustments in place if you disclose afterwards; however they are under no legal obligation to do so - if they were going to be nasty about your disability then you would be in a precarious situation legally as you couldn't force them to make adjustments.

IMO it's best to disclose first and make sure you're hired by someone decent, than to find out afterwards that you have a rubbish employer as I did last summer. I ended up signed off after 3 days as they wouldn't let me take my meds when I needed to and various other issues. I haven't been able to work since.

There are a number of options for you:

1) You can request to speak to a Disability Employment Advisor at the Job Centre. They can also refer you to Remploy and The Shaw Trust - two agencies which help disabled people find, and keep, suitable employment.

2) You could ask your GP to sign you off so you can claim ESA instead. There are two groups of ESA, the Support Group is for those deemed unfit for any work and the Work Related Activity Group is for those deemed to have limited capacity to work, but who may be able to do some work with the right help.

I'm in the ESA WRAG and have my first job centre interview on Tuesday. For the first 13 weeks you get paid the same rate as you do on JSA. But if you pass your medical with ATOS (unfortunately a lot don't and have to appeal) then you will be given better help to find work than you will on JSA. It's worth seeking further advice from the CAB or a similar organisation.

If you're worried about your GP's thoughts tell them the Job Centre are making you worse by not taking your Fibro into account. I told mine that a lady from the Job Centre advised me to claim ESA as I would get better and more appropriate help that way (which she did, very nice woman). My Dr agreed that I was limited as to what work I can do and that I needed time to build myself up before I could look for work.

It's worth thinking about your options. Speak to CAB about the legality of what they can force you to apply for etc - they have to take into account the fact that you are disabled. Good luck!
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Re: I have fibromyalgia & am currently on jobseekers allowance

Postby busy mummy » Mon Feb 20, 2012 3:55 am

Hi Polly,

I am an ex-jobcentre advisor and the way you have been treated is appauling. The advisor you saw must have been on some sort of power trip I think. I am about a year out of date on the rules and regs but I dont think things have changed so much in that time.

Firstly, do you get DLA for your son? If you do then they should not have taken you off Income support, if you dont then I would advise you to apply.

Secondly, as a parent you have the right to limit your availability for work on your Job seekers agreement, additionally, as a person with a disability you also have the right to limit your availability for work.

I agree with Lydia that you should see a DEA at the jobcentre, but it can take some time to get an appointment. My advice is that you should write a letter of complaint to the Jobcentre manager regarding how you have been treated and demand that your Jobseekers agreement be ammended in line with what you are able to do.

I am a little confused as to the timing of your benefit change. You say your son is nine, but I am sure that the upper age limit is seven, in which case you have either been taken off IS incorrectly, or your Jobcentre is super slow. Either way there is a mistake there and you should include this question in the letter to the JC manager.

If I were you I would also add that you refuse to be seen by that tin-pot-hitler again!!!!!

Good luck with it!!

Sarah x
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Re: I have fibromyalgia & am currently on jobseekers allowance

Postby FluppyPuffy » Mon Feb 20, 2012 10:25 am

:welcome: to the forum polly :bear-dancing: :bear-dancing:

I'm sorry to hear what you're going thru, there's not much more I can add to the info you've already been given, esp from Sarah (busy mummy)

I hope you can get things sorted out soon :fingerscrossed: :fingerscrossed: If there's anything else worrying you, or that you want/need to know about, just ask and we'll try to help you with it :teddy-bear: :teddy-bear: :teddy-bear:
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