Posted by: Ophelia | May 5, 2008

We don’t want your kind around here

So I’ve been applying to jobs for the summer and have been stumbling across a lot of the coded “no people with disabilities” language. Observe:

Stand and walk on hard-surface floors for entire shift, up to 8 hours, not including breaks. Firmly grasp utensils (including knives) and tools (including mops, brooms, etc.). Tolerate temperature extremes (hot and cold) in working in walk-in and around ovens and sinks. Repetitively lift up to 25-lb. boxes to maintain walk-in cleanliness, to rotate stock, and to store product.

The “firmly grasp utensils” bit seems especially geared to slam people with repetitive motion injuries, arthritis, and the elderly. This wasn’t the best job I’d ever seen, but at the same time, I have the luxury of being able to poo poo it and not apply. If I really needed the money, and happened to have a condition that oh say–prevented me from lifting 25  pounds regularly or after I’d been on my feet for hours, being unable to apply would sting.

This is one of the first times I’ve ever seen this sort of targeted language. Companies used to depend on implication to turn undesirables away–but now they come right out and say who can’t apply for this job. It’s just…disheartening.



  1. That does seem…extreme. Every job I’ve applied for (and granted, it’s not many, because like you, I’ve been able to “poo poo it and not apply” for most of my life) did not have that much of a narrow definition of what they are looking for.

    But then again…what if I wasn’t looking closely enough?

    Very interesting application for the real world. And possibly a very frightening one.

  2. “Must be able to speak in complete sentances and be able to identify shapes and colors.” That will probably be next on their job postings. I’ve personally never seen targeted ads like that when I was looking for jobs, but knowing me I probably wouldn’t have thought much about it even if I did at the time. It’s pretty chilling what they can get away with if you really think about it.

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