Goodwill deserves admiration, support

The Gazette Opinion Staff
Published: September 3 2012 | 12:47 pm - Updated: 31 March 2014 | 11:53 pm in
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Regarding Janet Sullivan’s Aug. 27 column “Goodwill workers’ wages fair”:

Following my retirement a few years ago, I worked part-time as a job coach for Goodwill Industries (in association with Grant Wood AEA). It was an extraordinarily rewarding period in my life. I had the good fortune to work closely with many young adults who, because of various barriers to independence, would find it difficult or impossible to gain employment and societal freedom without assistance.

During my time at Goodwill, I observed the process of clients learning and refining both employment and social skills. I saw the pride and sense of accomplishment as they learned and experienced success. Many had never been employed or felt the sense of accomplishment when getting that first paycheck.

One organization is calling for a boycott of Goodwill, stating that it is unfair and immoral that some clients receive less than minimum wage. My stand on this is clear, firm and founded on fact. Goodwill is a non-profit organization. As such, it exists solely for the benefit of its clients. Every Goodwill client is treated with respect and dignity. At no time would Goodwill exploit unethical practices to take advantage of its clients or other organizations within our community. Many processes are in place to make certain that the organization is in complete compliance with federal, state and local laws.

The old saying “If it ain’t broke don’t fix it” applies here.

Goodwill is a significant asset to our community and deserves our admiration and support.

Richard Gray

Cedar Rapids

 

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