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My Job Lost Due to Inaccessible Technology – Live at 11!

February 17, 2006 • Darrell Shandrow Hilliker

This just in — As of Feb. 28, I will be laid off due to the implementation of inaccessible Siebel technology and the lack of an available position anywhere else in the company! Stay tuned for future details.

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One opinion on “My Job Lost Due to Inaccessible Technology – Live at 11!

  1. Darrell, I am so sorry to hear of your job loss. On the one hand this sort of reminds me of when I was demoted at Natural Ties, although my situation was somewhat different. I had started out in the Natural Ties national office as a volunteer in the summer of ’99. I worked on a volunteer basis in their office for a little while, and then the staff put me on their payroll. They did this because I had a very good work record. I enjoyed being a fulltime staffer more or less, and this sat well with everybody else who was involved with Natural Ties including my folks. But for some unknown reason this decision to have me on the payroll did not sit well with the VR people. My counselor at the time kept calling our office and asking the staff to stop paying me. Eventually this got so out of hand that I just decided to call the Client Assistance Program. They were not of much help though. As a matter of fact nobody was able to even follow up with the situation. I can’t remember exactly why, but it just seemed as though the situation in which I found myself at the time was not something CAP either wanted to deal with or could deal with. So I was bumped back to volunteer status again, and VR did not support me. This decision was based on some structural changes being made in the national office, and the technology which I had been using would not be compatible with the more fast-paced receptionist duties. The staff discussed this with me and with my parents, and there were absolutely no ill feelings among us. Since I had no screen reader on which to rely for typing memos and other organizational material, a high-school student offered to be my reader. She had been a member of Natural Ties on a social level only, and she proved to be a very good worker. I eventually left employment at Natural Ties due to health reasons. One day when I was sitting at home with nothing to do, I decided to give Natural Ties a call to check in and let them know how I was feeling. After all, they were very supportive of me and sent me a nice get-well card, one of those Braille ones from Hallmark. The office was right next door to a Hallmark store. Back then I still lived with my folks. So I called the office and got a recording saying that Natural Ties was no more. I was rather shocked to say the least, so I decided to investigate. I eventually found out that they had monetary problems of a supposed undisclosed nature, and that they were officially gone for the time being at least. That was May of 2001. It is now almost March of 2006, and I am still out of a job. The job scene has been more or less discussed among me, my parents, and various other people, at various times since May of 2001, but it just seems that more or less nothing has been agreed on or acted upon. This is why I will keep pushing for a different VR system in this country. They don’t treat any situation as an individual situation, and it is really hurting a lot of us.

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