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What if you get hurt in one of your jobs? Can you still get another one?

Greetings! I'm Ms. Tipton at the International Community School. My 3rd graders have a few questions and I'd like to share your advice with them. Thanks in advance!

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Kim’s Answer

Hi!

Let's say you get hurt, and are now disabled. Of course you can get other work! Lots of people with disabilities hold jobs, including good-paying ones! Some are even attorneys.

There are special laws that make employers treat people with disabilities with respect. They have to give them what is known as "reasonable accommodations." For example, my eyes are very sensitive to light. When I was working, the fluorescent lights above my desk really bothered me. My boss had the maintenance people remove the lightbulbs from the light above my desk, and instead I used a lamp on my desk.

This is a very good question, because sometimes people don't think about what to do if they get hurt at work. Jobs that are very physical, such as construction, truck driver, police officer, can all come to an end due to an injury. So, it is a good idea to have what we call "Plan B." That is, some other type of job that interests you, that would be less physical. Because something like this is always a possibility, it's good to learn as much as you can about all different things - you never know when you might need it!
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David’s Answer

Of course you can! You can do anything you put your mind to! People that get hurt can often find new roles. Look at some of our Congress men and women who were injured in the military and now have new careers helping to lead our country. With technology and career development plans you can learn new things!
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Michael’s Answer

Sure you can. With today's technology there are many career paths that would be able to work around any limitations caused by an injury. There was a very impressive piece about a football player on 60 Minutes last night that had to work very hard to just be able to walk again. With his determination, perseverance and work habits he actually was able to play football again. And his story was not unique, there were many others they mentioned that went through a similar rehabilitation process. So the physical limitations that may be brought on from an injury should in no way keep you from realizing your dreams.
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Terri’s Answer

Yes, you can get a new job if you are hurt on the job. Sometimes, you are able to find another position with the same company, while there is often the need to change careers and companies. Either way, there are many jobs available - even if you get hurt on your job.
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Gloria’s Answer

Hi,

Anyone anywhere can get hurt on the job. The nature of the injury will determine if you can continue in the current job or if you need to get a new one. There are some jobs where some injuries don't change the job that you do. For example, I work in a job where you can have a large number of disabilities and still do my job. So if you are injured and lose your hearing or have to use a wheelchair, there are ways to accommodate both of those injuries in my job. You don't need to change your industry even if you have to change your job. Some people use their knowledge of an industry in new ways. So maybe you are a technician who has to climb poles who has an accident where she cannot climb ladders anymore. She can get a job in support of technicians where climbing ladders is not needed, such as being a dispatcher or a customer service representative.

Gloria
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Michael’s Answer

For the most part, sure you can. Normally, there is always opportunity to do something new. Even if our getting hurt permanently disabled us, there is something out there for us to do. For example, the Senator from Illinois (Sen. Tammy Duckworth) could no longer serve as an active military soldier on the battlefield because she lost her legs in a helicopter crash. So what she did was go through rehabilitation and before long became an overseer of Veterans Affairs and then ran to become a Senator from Illinois. If hurt on the job, many companies will work to find something new for you to do. Another question is this, "If I get hurt, am I willing to work to position myself for something new?"
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