Meg Casey
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"Most Able Disabled"

Meg Casey's handicapped issues column


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Meg Casey
photo by Daniel Ortoleva

Employing The Handicapped

Special Education

December 7 1983

Dear Miss Casey,

Do you know of any organization in town which helps young people with a disability like my son in job placement?

Richard is 17 and is in the ACES program.

Last summer he did help on a roofing job and loved it. Most importantly, he felt good about himself from knowing he could do something constructive.

Milford's special education does fail children like Richard who are capable of learning, but do need a helping hand in learning a trade.

Richard's mom

Dear Richard's mom,

I have been trying to find some useful answers for this matter for several weeks, now, but I am afraid that my efforts have not exactly been a success. The responses that I have received from my contacts at area resources have been unanimously requesting more specific, and some detailed information. They seek the information before any of them could safely be expected to make suitable recommendations for your son at any organization's programs.

For instance:

Is Richard still in school and attending ACES programs or has he finished? Is the school he is attending or has attended connecting to the ACES system of programs? If so which one? Doesn't ACES have a job placement program incorporated into its system? (As Richard's parent you will be entitled to ask specific questions about his education and training there. You would also be better able to give instant responses to the requests.) Each conversation ended in less than three minutes with all the representatives recommending that I contact the other program and vice versa.

It became increasingly obvious that I need to speak to you personally. However, my luck hasn't been any better in that endeavor. I am assuming that I have been equally as difficult to catch by phone.

Another alternative for obtaining information for Richard's choices of furthering his education and or training after high school is by contacting B.R.S. – The Bureau Of Rehabilitation Services, formerly the State Department of Vocational Rehabilitation, located at 414 Chapel St., Suite 301, New Haven.

D.V.R. can provide the information as to what is available for Richard to choose from as well as provide the funding and helping with transportation while attending training and job placement in the end. (This is how I received my art training.)

I shall look forward to hearing from you soon of your decisions and how Richard is doing with it all.

Finding Handicapped Jobs

January 12 1983

Dear Meg,

How can I find a job?

A.L.

Dear A.L.

I am afraid that a bit more information about yourself would have to be given before anyone would be able to offer you any specific directions in this manner.

Since you chose my column to address the issue I am presuming that you have a disability. Going on from that standpoint I may be I'll help you with some general advice.

B.R.S. was set up for helping persons with disabilities not only find job training appropriate for their individual situation but to help fund that education and in many cases secure employment after. With the aid of new computers they can actually target the employment fields and make projections as to where the biggest demands lay and how long those openings can be expected to remain available.

I would suggest that you try to contact the people at B.RS. and set up an appointment to see the representative for the New Haven area.

Answer The Darn Phone

February 29 1984

Dear Meg,

My telephone is ringing and no one is around to answer it! My business is growing daily and I need someone to answer the darn phone.

I am prepared to install the phone in a person's house and train him or her on how to answer it and take messages and pay $50 a week. (The value of $50 in 1984 would be worth $112 today.) The potential for advancement definitely exists.

Meg, I believe that this is a great opportunity for a disabled person with a nice, pleasant, clear voice who is home all day. Please hurry – my phone is ringing again!

Sincerely, W. S.

Dear Mr. S.:

I think this is a wonderful idea and a great opportunity for someone to earn money in the convenience of his-her own home.

I commend you for thinking about the disabled and the difficulties we know they all have fitting into the work place. I look forward to more businesses following your lead and tapping into the talents of people who might never be given the chance. It's nice to see that you came to them first.

Best person for the job

SAP hires people with Asperger's for their ability to focus on detail oriented tasks like checking for software errors that most others miss.

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© 2015 to 2017 site design by Daniel Ortoleva
photographs and other content courtesy of the Casey family unless noted
blog posts and art by Meg Casey
originally published 1982 to 1985 in the Milford Citizen newspaper