Employer And Community Rally To Help Disabled Security Guard
Handicapped and disabled workers face obstacles and discrimination other workers simply don't have to confront. Indeed, just one out of every five handicapped Americans is employed, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. But Pennsylvania ambulance company Liberty Ambulance has both provided employment to Markeys Smith, a wheelchair-bound resident of Lancaster, Penn., and gone out of its way to make sure he can stay in the workforce after his wheelchair was stolen.
After Smith's wheelchair was robbed outside of his house, he was unable to carry out his job working surveillance for the company's base, as local NBC affiliate WGAL reported. For the job, he's asked to watch over the company's headquarters and the surrounding parking lot and alleyways.
Hearing about the news, his community responded, and a local family donated a wheelchair to Liberty Ambulance.
"I feel blessed," Smith said in the report after being given the wheelchair. (The report didn't mention how much he makes or his exact condition.)
Smith, for his part, originally landed the job through his own gumption. As he recounted in the story, he approached the company and told the managers, "I want to work. I want a job," as he can be seen saying in the video above.
According to Liberty employee Brandin Hughes, Smith is the kind of co-worker you want to help out. "He likes to work for everything himself and not really have things given to him," he told WGAL.
Smith also told the news outlet he even prefers his new wheelchair, as it enables him to stay closer to the ground. He added that he liked the red and black design. "My favorite colors," he said.