Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Pay Day

"Al, guess how much my pay check was?"  

 "Uhh, $8.76?"




"[raised pitch, holding back laughter] Lower. "


" [laughter breaking through]  Lower."




"[laughter]For two weeks."


"[hysterical laughter] I know!!!" 

Amy works five days a week doing piece work, and can't buy one item in the dollars store after two weeks at work.  She gets $50 a month of her social security for expenses -- the rest goes to her facility.

Amy is lucky and has family and people who can help her pay her bills, but what about the people without family?  And what about Amy's emotional self?  Earning an income and providing for yourself is a pretty fundamental part of ones self-esteem and self-respect.

I realize that it costs money for Amy to work.  The facility and the staff cost money, but Amy is being deprived up THE POINT of going to work, unless of course, the only real goal is to keep her busy and provide her care for eight hours a day.

If she's not going to be making any money anyway, couldn't she be a volunteer greeter in a grocery store, and work with the paid greeter who would have the additional responsibility of facilitating Amy's participation?

Alternatively, she could probably rake it in begging on street corner.  She's cute, sweet, in a wheelchair, and sings.  We could even tether her cute dog to her and rub some dirt on her cheeks.


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