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Being told off for having to take early break.

Discussion in 'Jobs and Employment' started by Felly, Dec 22, 2016.

  1. Felly

    Felly Type 1 · Member

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    Hi all.

    I've been diabetic for 14 years and worked at my current company for 8 of those. In the past my company and management have always been supporting of my diabetes. However in the last 6 months or so they have stopped being. Occasionally, more often than it should, my sugars go low just before morning break. In the past I always went for food early to bring them back in check. Now though a manager is constantly telling me off for doing so and threatening me with further action if I continue. I have explained to him why I go when I do and that I can't help it. I also return to work as soon as possible.

    I'm worried that I may get sacked for trying to keep my condition under control. Is there anything I can do?
     
  2. GrantGam

    GrantGam Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    You shouldn't need to take an early break just because you've had a hypo. Are you not able to carry some dextrose tablets, jelly babies, etc in your pocket - and treat your hypo on the go?

    I'm not teaching you to suck eggs, so please don't think that I am! But you shouldn't need to take an early break because of a hypo.

    Also, it may be worth reconsidering how much bolus insulin you take with your breakfast if you find yourself having regular hypos at similar times in the morning. If it's not that, then I'd look at your basal insulin. If you're on a pump, then you may want to adjust your basal rate for this time in the morning.

    Either way, your manager should be understanding of your condition. It's very easy for a non-diabetic to judge - but the truth is - they have no idea what it's like... But, if I had an employee who was needing to take early breaks on a semi-regular basis, then I'd be a bit frustrated. Especially if there was something that could be done about it, which I'm sure there can be:)
     
  3. Felly

    Felly Type 1 · Member

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    I do take dextrose tablets but unless I have something more substantial I just go low again after 5 minutes. I've always been like that. It's not as bad now that I'm on the pump.

    I have played around with my bolus but can't seem to get it right at the moment.
     
  4. azure

    azure Type 1 · Expert

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    I'm not sure what job you do, but are you able to eat 'at your desk'? I sometimes had to have a small 'top up' of food and my manager was ok with me doing that as I worked.
     
  5. catapillar

    catapillar Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    @GrantGam1337 has set out some useful steps you could be taking to avoid the hypos (consider reducing breakfast bolus if you are frequently low mid morning, consider whether basal dose is correct for you) and for treating hypos on the go.

    You say you've explained to you manager the reason for taking breaks early. Is anyone from hr involved, given the threats of further action. Type 1 diabetes is a disability under the equality act. Employers have to make reasonable adjustments for your disability. Letting you move your break earlier, but taking the same length of break, seems like a reasonable adjustment.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  6. slip

    slip Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    If it's not your bolus causing the hypos then it has to be your basal rate, assume you've tried turning it down a bit for the period before your hypo time?
     
  7. Felly

    Felly Type 1 · Member

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    @azure I am able to eat at my desk and that is what I do. That is classed as having a break at my work.

    @catapillar Speaking with HR would be the next step. It hasn't got that far yet thankfully.

    @slip I am trying different things to stop the hypos. When I lowered my basal I ended up going to high. I think I just haven't found the balance yet.

    Thanks all for your replies.
     
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  8. azure

    azure Type 1 · Expert

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    Hmm, I ate as I worked (obviously small amounts and choosing appropriate food) and that wasn't classed as a break. I feel it's unfair to call it a break if you're eating and still working.

    Could you try to explain again why you need to eat?
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
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