Hey everybody!! Welcome back to Uniqueli MADE. October is a month filled with awareness from Breast Cancer to Spina Bifida. It is also National Disability Employment Awareness Month. It is a month to raise awareness of the employment needs and contributions of individuals with all types of disabilities.
Now, through years of fighting and raising awareness disability and employment has bridged a significant gap. The employment-population ratio for persons with a disability increased from 17.9 percent in 2016 to 18.7 percent in 2017. Although, this is amazing and shows how far we have come there’s still so much more to do. The unemployment rate for persons with a disability was 9.2 percent in 2017, more than twice that of those with no disability (4.2 percent). It seems as though we are given so many tools, resources, and ways to even become entrepreneurs that we shouldn’t have a high unemployment rate. Yeah, I know right. I’ve said this many times, and it still remains true, unfortunately. The tools and resources that they have in place to “help us achieve independence” has so many holes and red tape it is not worth trying.
About a week ago, I took the chance to try my luck at getting a part-time job because a little extra income could really help. Before I continue, these are my thoughts and experiences only. I can and will only speak for myself. I don’t even think I was really on an “official” job hunt. After so many roadblocks in the past no lie I took a break, and put my focus back on and into my brand. Well, I checked my email one morning like I do every morning and I had seen an email from this job board I joined a few years ago. It’s called The Work At Home Woman all her blogs and job leads are 100% real. Opening this email I thought I’d just read it and not follow up or click any of the links but after reading it and seeing Amazon had openings for part-time Remote Seasonal Customer Service Associates something told me “Tiff, go for it!” I went immediately to Amazon and searched for the job. I filled out the application and attached my credentials then off it went. Usually, it would take a few days, probably a week or two to hear something back but I received a response…an actual job offer in less than three days.
After, getting the job the work began to make sure I had everything in order to start when they told me. Now, I knew I needed to call and talk to Social Security because I knew there would be consequences, so I needed to make sure I had a correct understanding. The following day, which was Monday I began calling, bright and early. It took two days for someone to return my call. I explained that I was disabled and I have gotten offered a part-time job. I then asked, what is it that I need to do to make sure I’m covering all my bases with you all?
Without asking what form of benefits I receive she says, “you can just start working and then call to report your wages”. Sound weird, right? I thought so too, but was thinking maybe regulations had changed I wasn’t aware of. That’s because she assumed I got SSDI benefits. She told me that with the “Ticket to Work” program I would be able to work 9 months without it affecting my benefits. It would be known as a “trial work period”. This would be perfect IF I received SSDI.
Wonder why there’s a difference?? Stay tuned to my next blog…