The American corporate model includes something very basic; make money to the greatest degree possible. Lately, corporations have become so greedy that many people who experience forms of disabilities are simply priced out of the market for items, or taken advantage of when they reach for services through corporations. In the meantime, many corporations have chosen not to hire people with disabilities – the vast majority of us have always been unemployed, despite skills we may have.
Do corporations have any level of social responsibility? After all, people who experience forms of disabilities are not exactly the wealthiest individuals in America. To be plain, as a population we command vast sums of money, yet corporations often times perceive us based on an individual basis or use a broad brush to paint us as a population. Corporations also seem to fail to understand that we, as people who do experience forms of disabilities, also have family members and friends.
A Definition of, ‘Corporate Social Responsibility’
What is, ‘corporate responsibility?’ It is initiative taken by a corporation to assess and take responsibility for the company’s effects on the environment and its impact on social welfare. The term usually is applied to corporate efforts that go beyond what might be required by environmental protection groups or regulators. Corporate social responsibility may also be referred to as, ‘corporate citizenship,’ and may involve incurring short-term costs that do not provide an immediate financial benefit to the company, yet promote positive environmental and social change.
Companies have lots of power in the community and the national economy. Corporations control vast assets and may have billions of dollars in cash at their disposal for socially conscious investments and programs. Some companies might engage in, ‘greenwashing,’ or faking interest in corporate responsibility. While many large corporations are devoting real money and time to social and environmental programs, many are not. It is very clear that some corporations in America have thrown social responsibility to the wind in favor of every dollar they can gain in any way.
Cable companies provide services such as television programming and Internet services. For many people who experience forms of disabilities, this is the only entertainment we have. Yet cable companies, very major ones, insist their products are worthwhile despite costing more than $100 a month and presenting shows that have been re-run so many times they should be included in American history courses. While these cable companies may or may not demand that a person have a contract with the company, they certainly have no issue with charging people with disabilities hundreds of dollars if they cancel services.
One person with a disability stated to me in regards to cable television, “They could at least show **something**, just one decent show that is fun to watch.” I agree; my suggestion? Do not order cable television, it smells badly. Instead, order Internet services from the company that offers the best Internet service at the lowest price and order Netflix or Hulu. Netflix; for example, costs around $8-11 a month, leaving cable television companies to wonder where their customers are going.
When you live on a fixed income, cable television services simply are not worthwhile. I dropped cable television and to be plain – I don’t miss it one single bit. Buy a $10 loop antenna, a VCR/DVD player at the Arc or Goodwill, and save yourself a bundle of money by doing so. Watch movies you buy at the Arc or Goodwill, they are just as good as the junk shows cable TV providers offer. Watch broadcast television, Netflix or Hulu, and your own movies.
The banks in America have people with disabilities by the proverbial’s. As a person with disabilities, you have to have a bank account in order to cash your checks and receive SSI, SSDI, or VA payments automatically. Yet if you go over the amount in your account by even a single dollar you can expect to find yourself facing a, ‘non-sufficient funds,’ fee. Yes, banks in America will not hesitate to charge $30 or more fees to people on fixed incomes who have forms of disabilities.
Banks are in business for one single reason, to make money – tons of it. If you, as a person with disabilities, use web bill pay to pay bills you can expect your bank to take advantage of you if one of the payments are not made at the time you schedule it to be. If one single bill, even a tiny one, finds your bank failing to pay it on the date it was supposed to through web bill pay you can expect to be charged a fee. Banks will do this and then tell you, ‘I’m sorry, it takes time to pay bills through web bill pay.’
A suggestion? Use money orders, envelopes and stamps to pay your bills instead of web bill pay through your bank. Money orders, envelopes and stamps are **far** cheaper than the potential for a bank fee. You can usually purchase a money order for around $1 and gain a great amount of peace of mind.
Large Shopping Stores
Large shopping stores can often times be a menace to the world of people with disabilities. You may very well enter one of these massive grocery/cosmetics/sporting goods and so forth types of stores and find yourself facing great emptiness where availability of a riding shopping cart is concerned. You may find yourself in one of the many aisles attempting to find assistance with reaching something on a high shelf. You may also find yourself wondering if such a massive shopping store has any real respect for you as an individual.
The truth of the matter? A massive shopping store offers you **nothing** more than your local grocery store. In fact – the more massive the shopping store, the more likely you are to find those who work there and shop there to be rather rude.
Instead, purchase your groceries at your local grocery store. Find the other items you need such as soap, shampoo, dog or cat food and so forth at dollar stores. You will save a lot of money by doing so and massive shopping stores can do without the 50+ million people with disabilities in America alone they have utterly failed.
Employers in America, you gotta love them. Many companies in America tout their compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), all while failing to hire proportionate numbers of people who experience forms of disabilities. The fact that the overwhelming majority of people with disabilities in America are unemployed at any level is a shame on this nation.
As a veteran and person with disabilities, I always ask myself if I **truly need** a product or service some company is offering. In most instances I do not. A company better hope and pray I really need their product or service. I receive mail from companies offering products and services all the time – into the round file they go.
I do not even pay attention to the majority of corporations in America, they are not worth my time. If corporations in America cannot hire adequate numbers of the people in populations I am a part of, why should I have anything to do with them? Why should I, ‘upgrade,’ services from them, or purchase their products?
America desperately needs to pass a bill requiring any company with more than 50 employees to ensure that at least 15% of those employees are people with disabilities, veterans, or seniors. We are very much parts of American society and deserve opportunity. Instead, most of us are not employed at any level: full-time, part-time, or even job sharing levels.
Corporations are taking advantage of people with disabilities and they know it. The way to fight back is to ignore their product or service offerings, choosing instead only those you really, honestly need. Repeatedly make statements online about the failure of companies in America to be inclusive, or to provide adequate assistance when needed. Until the vast majority of us are included in the offerings of jobs, products and services, to hades with corporations that have failed us for the duration of American history.
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