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Job center should help refugees

Posted: July 9, 2014 - 3:59pm

Imagine yourself a refugee coming to a country chosen for you, where you do not know anyone, and where you know you will be discriminated against. Now, imagine yourself in this country trying to get a job but unable to read or write. You are forced by this circumstance to rely on other people like a severely disabled person. You just need help; help with mountains of paperwork, help with calling from a phonebook, help with all of those things you, lifelong resident, take for granted.  

Sadly, Homer has lost its empathy and gone cruel and unfeeling for other people’s plights, especially the Homer job center, an important and vital place to our livelihoods. Here is a direct example: knowing that a client cannot read or write English, they shrug their shoulders, show you to a chair, point at the computer with the job website on it and go back to their desks to “do their job” consisting of typing on their computer or picking their  fingernails.

Meanwhile, you sit there, stunned, not knowing what to do, feeling completely alone and hopeless. You, the reader will probably say, “No, how can this be? Maybe, the employees didn’t understand something? Surely there is another aspect?” Maybe there is, and I welcome an explanation other than “it is not in our job description,” but in this particular true example, the client explained the limitations and asked for assistance.    

I know that helping someone like this person requires extra time and patience, but you are in the business of helping people find jobs. Is it not why you are there? I have seen better, I expected better. What do you get paid for, Homer job center employees, or is helping refugees and immigrants not in your job description?

Elizabeth Kandror

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