Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Who Are We Now? Are We Just Numbers?

I have read some funny things lately about job interviews and while some of these are supposed to be fresh, new occurances, I can tell you way back in the 1980's when I could get jobs, I had heard the following tall tales:

1- Wash your car and clean it out, some bosses won't hire you with a dirty car.
2- Clean your purse and make sure you have pens and a pad within opening reach, if you have to dig in your purse, you won't get hired.
3- Don't wear a dress or pants, the boss only hires people who wear skirts.

While I can neither confirm nor deny these rumors, when have we allowed job interviews to boil down to how someone cuts their meat? Who decides if cutting it all at once or one bite at a time is correct? Please, we now have people who decide if we get a job because they are food/eating experts?? Stick me with a fork, I am done! PUN intended.

I am a 53 year old white woman raising 3 young grandchildren, I have degrees in Leadership, Business Management, Public Administration and Human Resources my GPA was 3.85 with a 4.0 for my Masters. I have over twelve years police and fire dispatch experience, experience in training, policy and procedure writing, training manual writing, not to mention many years prior in the medical field and most recently mentoring at risk students and substitute teaching. I can't find a full-time job.

What about those people who have lost their homes? Lost all their money in their IRA or retirement accounts, lost life savings with the Madoff scam? How will they find a job?

While President Obama is pushing for health insurance for everyone, I think he should be pushing to lock up our credit reports. Thats right, I do not feel I should be turned down for a job based on my credit report.
I am so much more than my credit report shows. I have never missed a car insurance premium or car payment, but because my credit report has now tanked, I pay higher premiums.

While I do volunteer work for my church and church youth groups, make quilts for people in need and for my family, reach out to those hurting, don't drink, don't do drugs, am very reliable, I am nothing to most employers anymore but a credit report.

Because my credit report is bad and many others in this country, we are deemed to be at risk to steal, cheat and embezzle. Hmmm, I bet Bernie Madoff had impeccable credit while he cheated people out of their money.

Who do you want working for you? A CEO with a great credit report that ran a company into bankruptcy court or a CEO that had a stellar record with a company but his credit tanked?

I had a credit card with a credit union in Arizona for years, I had great credit, had a credit card through them and a car account and I never missed a payment even during the toughest times, I kept the credit union paid. Then, tough times set in, I couldn't find work and my credit started falling apart...but not my payments to the credit union. Imagine my surprise when they shut down my credit card after running an arbitary credit report. It didn't imagine I still had not missed a payment with them or several other creditors, all that mattered to them was my credit report.

So, when you are out looking for a new job or a part-time job and you see someone like this guy looking at what appears to be notes, you can almost guarantee it is your credit report and if it isn't tip top, you will probably be turned down for the job and of course no one will tell you that.

So, today, I received notice from Alpine Access a work at home company that I was turned down for a work at home position because I had bad credit over the last 4 years.

I thank them for being honest, but as I told them in my reply, I am so much more than my credit report, how about you? Do you have something to offer an employer, but keep getting told no due to your age or credit score?

Let your government officials know, call or write them a letter to change the laws and to disallow the credit bureaus to have all this power over us. After all, many of us lead, honest, hard working lives, all we want is a chance to show an employer we can do it. Don't use a credit report to make a decision. After all, even criminals have good credit reports!

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