Workplace rights

Many people fear that they will face discrimination if they tell their employer they have cancer. Others fear being sacked because they need time off work for treatment or to care for a family member with cancer.

While many employers and colleagues are caring and supportive, discrimination in the workplace can occur. Knowing your rights and responsibilities may help you feel reassured that you are not being unfairly treated due to your illness or treatment, or because of your caring responsibilities.

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Seek professional advice

This section discusses the law that applies to most employees in Australia under the Commonwealth Disability Discrimination Act 1992 and Fair Work Act 2009. The law that applies to you depends on the organisation you work for, your employment status, and whether there is any applicable state or territory legislation.

Your award or enterprise agreement may provide additional entitlements. You should obtain specific advice about your situation from a lawyer who specialises in employment matters.

This information was last reviewed in January 2017
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