Dominick's closure affects employees with disabilities

The Dominick's closure impacted many employees with developmental disabilities. (WLS)
April 27, 2014 7:33:09 AM PDT
The closing of Dominick's in December 2013 left thousands of workers without jobs, and among them were employees with developmental disabilities.

Finding employment for people with disabilities is not easy. Often there are other issues that need to be considered. This is the case for these former Dominick's employees.

Robert "Bobbie" Maydrich, 50, spent 15 years at Dominick's.

"I was the utility clerk," said Maydrich. "I worked the front end bagger cart retriever and floor sweeper floor inspection."

He worked five to eight hours per day, five days a week and was employee of the month.

"As of October we found out we weren't going to be open anymore, we were going to close down," he said. "I like the people I worked with, I was sad to see them go."

Maydrich's girlfriend Amy Hennessy also worked for Dominick's. She was there for 14 years.

"I was a utility clerk, I bagged groceries," Hennessy said. "I miss my friends. I miss the money."

Bruce Flowers is the marketing coordinator NEDSRA - Northeast DuPage Special Recreation Association in Addison. He said there are several like Maydrich and Hennessy who lost their jobs.

"A lot of them were shocked that it was going out of business, some of our participants had been working at Dominick s for a long time," Flowers said. "The difficult thing about not working, not having an income is that our programs do cost money."

"The NEDSRA programs are very important in the lives of our participants," Flowers said. "Having that social aspect to sports programs and leisure programs is important to our participants."

Access to transportation is another issue for workers with disabilities.

"Jewel is down the street from me and I don't have to depend on my sister to take me to work," Maydrich said. "Because it's close to my house and I have a lot of friends there."

"I'm going to apply again because there was so many of us at Dominick's that I have to re-do it all over again, and Amy does the same thing too," Maydrich said. "Not everybody gets in the first time, but maybe the second time around or third time."

Hopefully they will get a job soon.

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