Today I had two scheduled job interviews and one impromptu interview. The scheduled interviews went well. The other one on the other hand ranks right up there with being fired for having a disability.
I found a few job listings for a Palouse Pets in Moscow, ID and decided to drop my resume off. The jobs included a dog bather and a kennel technician. So, considering my background in animal science and having 3 years of experience as, essentially, a kennel tech at the university I thought it would be a fairly easy job to land.
Well, that wasn’t so. During the interview we discussed my qualifications and abilities, but soon the conversation started to focus on the fact that I have a disability. Now, I have had this disability for over six and a half years and nothing short of extensive surgery can be done about it*. I have no restrictions other than what I feel is needed. The bitch conducting the interview had a real issue with my disability as it reduces usability in one hand, but does not limit functionality as a whole. The disability is something that hasn’t stopped me from working with animals in the past, including horses. This woman felt that I could not function well enough to handle a bunch of dogs and wants me to get permission from my doctor, whom I haven’t seen in over three years, so as to verify that I can indeed fully use my arm. She felt I would be a liability if I were to be injured. The disability in my right arm makes me no more likely to be injured than anyone else. No other past jobs felt that I was a liability to the company.
This lady badly insulted me and my abilities by being discriminatory. Furthermore she told me I had to be a dog bather before I could even think about being a kennel tech, despite my past experience. She refused to look past my disability and let that make her decision. Even if I were to jump through her hoops, I feel that it would be more of a hostile work environment instead of something enjoyable. I SHOULD NOT need permission from anybody to do something I know I can handle. Not only do I think I can handle the position, I worked for 3 years for a University taking care of kennels and managing the animals. I have never had this problem with other job interviews, ever. The only other place that took issue with my disability knew about it before hiring me and then decided after a month to fire me because of it. If I had the means, I would hire a lawyer for not only wrongful termination, but discrimination and acts that go against the ADA.
Needless to say, I will NOT be doing business there ever! If you live in the Moscow/Pullman area, I would suggest taking this issue under advisement if you have pets. Discrimination deserves to be ridiculed and thrown aside, whether it be by sex, race, sexuality, disability, size, or any other manner. It is despicable and those that partake in it should be rooted out and exposed for who they are.
*This surgery would take 3 months to do the basic recovery. Note I said basic, it’s another 12-18 months to relearn how to use my hand in general. Not including how to write, type, or most important to me playing my flute.