AUTHOR’S CORNER: Breaking the Discrimination Cycle by author Ann Harrison-Barnes

Good morning again campbellsworld visitors and readers one and all.

We’re back here in the Author’s Corner with one of the newest members of the Totally Talented Tell-It-To-The-World Marketing family.

This morning author Ann Harrison-Barnes joins us not only to introduce us to her latest book but to talk to us about a problem that far too many blind and disabled persons continue to face in our so-called modern world.

As you read, I’d like to draw your attention to Ann’s obvious professional talent. Not only is her article well written but the attention she gives to detail where her self-created media kit is concerned is some of the best I’ve seen in quite some time.

Now as a rule I do not play favorites among my clients, but I do believe when someone puts forth obvious effort it should be recognized and that is why I’ve mentioned this today.

I hope that you’ll take the time to visit Ann’s blog sometime soon and if you do that, you’ll let her know from where you heard of her wonderful work.

And now, here’s Ann’s article which was originally posted to her blog the link to which can be found in the information shared below.

 

 

Good Sunday afternoon, everyone.

Today I want to talk ta journey of faith ebooko you about a serious topic. My discussion is about the unemployment rate and where blind people stand, where finding a job is concerned. Now please don’t think that I am judging employers, but there is a problem, that I feel needs to be solved.

 

As a blind person, finding a job, whether as a writer, or in any other industry is nearly impossible. I say nearly, because I did find a few writing jobs in my nearly eight years of experience as a freelance writer. However, when I look for a particular job that I am interested in, there are several things that stop me in my tracks. For instance, many company managers/clients want pictures added to their blogs or websites. When I write the article and tell the potential client that I cannot add pictures to my pieces, due to my visual impairment, they choose to give me the silent rejection. What do I mean by those? These potential clients don’t reply to me, or they don’t respond to my application.

 

Here’s another example of a blind person not getting a job, because employers won’t give him a chance. My husband has tried to find jobs in a variety of different places. For instance, the church we used to go to offered to give him a chance to start a ministry for people with disabilities. However, when he asked about getting a job within the church, he was turned down. This is a large church, with many business people as members, but no one would give my husband a chance. I tried to work for a member of the media team, who runs his own business. I was hired to write op-eds for a web site that his company started. However, I had to remind him that I had sent him the article, and I had to ask to be paid for the article. I sent a second article, with no results.

 

Although I have had mishaps during my job hunt, there are a few people who did hire me based on my high-quality content. First of all, I want to thank Ernest Dempsey for hiring me to write for his blog called Word Matters, which can be found at the following web site:

http://www.ernestdempsey.com

I also want to thank Dan Antion for hiring me to review his company’s web site for accessibility. This job I thoroughly enjoyed, and I learned something interesting about a nuclear power plant. Finally, I want to thank Mia Bysinger from a web development company called Rushcube, for hiring me as part of the team of writers, who created landing page content for various websites. If you look at my professional writing services” page on my web site, you’ll not only see links to some of these landing pages, but you will also read her client testimony.

 

There are several blind people looking for jobs today, who either have no success, or have to work for the industries for the blind in their state, who hire more blind than sighted employees. This is a problem in the blind community and is the reason for the unemployment rate amongst blind people to be at a staggering rate of 62.3% according to the National Federation of the Blind (NFB) in 2012.

 

I am starting my own business, and here’s my take on hiring people to work for me. As a blind business owner, I will need the assistance of a sighted employee, and I would hire him or her, if he or she is qualified to perform the duties I need him or her to perform. I would also treat my employee(s) with the utmost respect, while monitoring their work. I would hire people to help me run my writing business, based on their qualifications, not merely on the basis of their disabilities, or lack thereof. If sighted employers would give blind people the same respect as we would give them, the economy would be in much better shape, and the unemployment rate would be much lower for blind people and people with disabilities as a whole.

 

Here’s my point: there are companies that claim to be equal opportunity employers, yet they reject qualified candidates with disabilities. Why can’t all companies, regardless whether the businesses are large, midsized, or small, treat applicants equally? Why can’t employers without disabilities base their hiring decisions upon the applicants’ qualifications, instead of discriminating against them on the basis of their disabilities? For those of you who are business owners, would you be willing to hire a person with a disability, based upon his or her qualifications, or are you hesitant to hire a person with a disability, because you don’t understand their needs, in order to provide them with reasonable accommodation to help them perform the duties of the job you wish to hire them for? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.

 

Please answer this question in the comments also. If you are a business owner, looking for qualified employees, are you willing to give candidates with disabilities an opportunity to work for you with reasonable accommodation? Let’s break the cycle of discrimination against the disability, please give a disabled person a chance to work for you, dependent upon their qualifications.

Thanks for reading and considering my opinion post today. Until next time, happy reading, writing, and please reach out to help blind and disabled people become employed, so we can lower the staggering unemployment rate.

God bless you my dear readers.

 

More about Ann Harrison-Barnes

 

Welcome to my Media Kit. I am pleased to share the message of God’s love through compelling and entertaining stories.

 

A Journey of Faith: A Stepping Stones Mystery, written by Ann Harrison

 

Twenty-eight-year-old Becca Martin witnessed a tragic accident at the age of twelve. Sixteen years later, she embarks upon a journey that she believes has somehow been chosen for her by God. During this journey, she hears a voice in the back of her mind crying, “God help me!”, as memories she didn’t understand as a child begin to resurface in her nightmares and during the journey itself. Was this tragedy a freak accident, or is there more to the incident that meets the eye? The owner of Sweet Water State Park calls Zac Johnson and Jason Miller of the Tensiltown Police to investigate various incidents out on the bike and foot paths. During their investigation, Jason meets Becca along her journey and they both feel strongly drawn to each other. She longs to help the police of this small village investigate these incidents, but in order to do so, she must face her fear of climbing the rocks at Sweet Water Park, while caring for her ailing aunt and helping her uncle to run the diner. Jason vows to stay close beside her every step of the way, but can she fully trust him and the girl in the white robe that seems to pop up out of nowhere when trouble arises? Who is the real bad guy? How does God reveal what happened on that unforgettable day on the rocks with her family? Does the memory of the incident help the police solve this rock-climbing mystery? Find out more as the author pulls you into the first novel in her spine-tingling, heart-warming Stepping Stones mystery series.

 

Buy link:

 

Author Bio:

 

In the words of Ann Harrison-Barnes, January 2019

 

About me:

I am the proud single mother of a beautiful daughter, who is often the inspiration for many of my stories featuring children. I have three nieces and a nephew whom I love from the bottom of my heart.

I have found music to be a great source of healing throughout rough and painful times in my life. I also find it to be a great source of inspiration through traditional means and through the world around me.

About my blindness:

Although I was not born prematurely, I was placed in an incubator and given 24 hours of oxygen, when I should have only received eight. This excessive amount of oxygen caused my optic nerves not to develop properly, resulting in my blindness. I have light perception in my left eye, and none in my right. The right eye was removed when I was eighteen months old and I have worn prostheses since then, until recently. I have used a cane since I was about five years old, accept during the period from April 2006 to March 2009, when I worked my one and only guide dog named Star. She was a black lab Golden retriever mix from Southeastern Guide Dogs.

Where I liv and work: I currently live in Rochelle, Georgia near my parents and one of my two brothers, when he’s not working on the road. I have worked from home for various freelance clients, while writing my novels. These clients include Mia Bysinger from Rushcube, a web development company and Earnest Dempsey’s Word Matters Blog.

Why I write: First of all, I love creating stories that will entertain my readers. Through these entertaining stories, I also hope to either share the message of God’s love or bring back childhood memories, through my Children’s books. I journal for healing and brainstorming. I am writing non-fiction to help aspiring authors self-publish their own books through Amazon

Hobbies: My hobbies include listening to music and podcasts, reading, crocheting and sitting out on the front porch on a warm day.

Music I enjoy: I love listening to classic country music, instrumental pieces such as classical, new age piano pieces and film scores. I also find that the environment is filled with natural music.

Podcasts I find educational and entertaining: I have a variety of podcasts I listen to on a daily basis. Some of my favorites include: The Author Stories Podcast with Hank Garner, The Creative Penn, I Should be Writing, Ditch Diggers, Eyes On success, how do you Write and Writing Excuses.

My favorite authors and genres: I love to read books by Karen Kingsbury, Janette Oke, Hope Callahan, and I love finding new authors. My favorite genres include: Christian fiction, cozy mystery, sweet romance and Romantic suspense. I’ll also read the occasional memoire.

My Faith: I am a Christian. I believe that Jesus died on the cross to save my soul. In God’s word, Jesus said “I am the way, the truth and the life. No man cometh unto the Father but by me.” (John 14:6, KJV)

Book list:

A Journey of Faith: A Stepping Stones Mystery

Inner Vision: An Electric Eclectic Book

Maggie’s Gravy Train Adventure: An Electric Eclectic Book

Stories Outside the Box

Links

 

Website:

https://annwritesinspiration.com

Electric Eclectic books website:

http://bit.ly/visitEEbooks

 

Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/ElectricEclecticBooks/

https://www.facebook.com/annwritesinspiration

Twitter:

 

Amazon author page:

https://www.amazon.com/Ann-Harrison/e/B01H68QH5U

 

Anthologies

Awthology Light:

https://www.amazon.com/Awethology-Light-Awethors/dp/1518868843

 

the December Awthology light volume

 

Gems of Strength

 

 

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17 Responses to AUTHOR’S CORNER: Breaking the Discrimination Cycle by author Ann Harrison-Barnes

  1. Pingback: AUTHOR’S CORNER: Breaking the Discrimination Cycle by author Ann Harrison-Barnes | Ann Writes Inspiration

  2. Thanks, Patty. I pressed it on my own blog.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Patty says:

      Hi, you’re welcome. It was a very well written article, and I absolutely am 100% impressed with your media kit. I can tell that you took time in creating it. It’s very nice.

      Like

  3. Thanks, I did take my time and I used your media kit as a guide.

    Like

    • Patty says:

      I’m glad you took the time to do that. It’s why I send it out to new clients so they have some pattern to work from.

      Of course everyone should have their own style, and you certainly do, I learned the majority of what I know from watching what others do.

      Monkey see monkey do is not a bad way to get your feet under you.

      Like

  4. Patty and Ann,
    I enjoyed Ann’s comments on the unemployment problem among blind adults. My first job offer after graduating from college was to work in a sheltered workshop. At first, I thought they wanted me to be a supervisor, but they wanted me to put erasers on the ends of pencils. I declined.

    I know many blind/VI people who have had humiliating experiences with prospective employers who were reluctant to hire them. Others got jobs and encountered resistance to their need for accessible software necessary to complete their work. One man who actually got the job found out later that his employer was concerned that he would have to get another employee to help him use the bathroom and eat.

    My perspective is that employers, like far too many sighted people, have an entrenched negative belief about what blindness means in terms of ability and independence. Blindness is a low-incidence disability, and the onset of most blindness happens in adulthood. Therefore, children rarely are exposed to other blind children. They get their opinions about blindness from adults or their own imaginings. They grow up to be prejudiced, small-minded employees, employers, neighbors, and professionals. If they are among those destined to lose their own sight, they often turn this negativity against themselves.

    I find that sighted people often try to make light of it when blind people voice their frustration about incidents with the public. They don’t understand how the underlying negativity effects our ability to find employment and to participate in countless activities in our communities. We need to do something proactive about this; I suggest school programs introducing kids to talented and independent blind people. I used to do this, mostly on the elementary and middle school levels, and it was very rewarding.

    Books by blind authors with blind characters for all age levels and in a variety of categories (fantasy, adventure, family, sci fi, etc), are in short supply. I don’t think we will get beyond the unemployment problem until we make a significant improvement in the public mind-set about blindness.

    Like

    • Patty says:

      Hi.

      First off, thanks so much for reading and commenting.

      Secondly, while I agree with a lot of what you say, I’d have to disagree with where you say the majority of blindness comes from, but that might be a topic for another post.

      All of that aside, the biggest problems I find is lack of education among the public. Another problem I find though, and I’m walking out onto thin ice because so many blind persons get angry with me for saying this but another large problem I see is coming from the blind community itself. Far too many blind persons have a very bad habit of yelling “Treat me like everyone else” out of one side of their mouth but when they’re presented with changes in technology, such as new software, or operational systems, rather than take a class to learn how to use said software, or updated operational systems, they’re found to be yelling out of the other side of their mouths, “I cannot do this! I’m blind!”

      Now, I have proof of this due to some of the very people I work with and while I refuse to put everyone in the same box, and there are plenty of very capable blind persons who wish to learn and bust their humps doing so there are way too many who are hindering those who are willing to work harder than ever before with their constant whining and refusal to do so.

      Over the past three or four years I have encountered obstacle after obstacle, where finding the right sorts of learning tools to advance my skills has been concerned, but I kept at it, refused to take no for an answer and am now finally after much hard work and perseverance getting the help I need, so I know that it is hard to deal with the constant struggle but until the blind community at large stands up and gets with the program nothing is going to change for those like Ann and the others who work hard to be the best they can be.

      Like

      • I agree, many of the problems we face have a lot to the blind community as a whole. For example, my husband, from whom I’ve been separated for over six monts says he wants to work, but refuses to do anything to better himself so he can go to work. My first husband refuses to go to work. It gives those of us who work for what we awnt a bad name.

        Like

      • Patty says:

        Not that I’m into EX bashing, but well, my EX went to college on the state’s dime and never once tried to get a job with his degree. He was happy to sit and draw money from his father’s social security and to allow me to work 80 hours a week so he could be a pervert in style.

        That having been said, I know there are lots of hard working blind folk who aren’t given credit for what they’re able to do. I’ve been in that boat and got so sick of it that I finally just created my own job.

        And, finally this year it is starting to make me a bit of a living. I’m not where I want to be with it yet and I’ve much to learn but I’m a heck of a lot further than I was and the first part of anyone’s success no matter what they’re wanting to do with their lives is to stop saying “I can’t” and start saying, “I can” and “I will”

        Like

      • You know something, Patty? I’m not only promoting my work with your help, but I am selling my own books in tow stores and I sold five books at a family reunion this weekend. Sometimes you’ve got to get out in the public eye so people know who you are.

        Like

      • Patty says:

        You just have to work real hard to let people know you mean business and that you’re not afraid to sweat.

        Like

  5. Patty,
    I apologize if you have two comments on this from me. I didn’t get a confirmation on the first one, though it did disappear.

    My belief that most blindness occurs in adulthood comes from the following pages from the American Foundation for the Blind.
    AFB on blind adults:
    http://www.afb.org/info/blindness-statistics/adults/facts-and-figures/235#content
    Children and Youth with Vision Loss – American Foundation for the Blind:
    http://www.afb.org/info/blindness-statistics/children-and-youth/children-and-youth-with-vision-loss/235#content

    Blind people, like the general population we come from, tend to be “catastrophizers (as one of my friends across the pond would say). They’d rather complain than do something constructive about their problems. The trick for those who want to rise above is to keep ourselves away from that mentality. I’m not sure what you’re disagreeing with me about on this point. Both of us believe education of the general public is necessary.

    Like

    • Patty says:

      Not really disagreeing, just that I know tonsof people whowere blinded at ornear birth and I really do believe what with all the mainstreamingthat goes on now there are more blind children meetingsighted than there once were. Again that’s really not the topic of this post as I said, and your other comment did go through because I approved it myself and people have replied to it other than me.

      Like

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