The start of the following story is true. The twist at the end is fiction. But the moral is true.
There was a young black mentally challenged man living with his foster mother since he was released from the state hospital , where he had been since birth.
His foster mother taught him many skills to keep himself and his room clean. He enjoyed helping with the laundry. He was meticulous in the way he folded towels and bedding. He would give a hug to his mother after they had finished the day’s work.
This young man was non-verbal. I worked with him to develop a picture book so he could point to needed items and answer simple questions.
An opening in a commercial laundry was found. Patrick seemed a perfect fit. The state subsidized his pay and training. Patrick did his job well. Even doing more work than some of his fellow workers.
One woman, who wasn’t the fastest worker, accused him of touching her. Patrick did touch her on the arm to get her attention to look at his picture book to communicate.
After the training period, Patrick was let go. He was sad he could no longer do the job he loved.
Below is the Twilight Zone story
Patrick was happy in his new position. Clean laundry everywhere and he could fold it all! He set to work and had to be reminded to take breaks and lunch. While he touched several co-workers arms to ask them “where was the bathroom?” No one paid him any attention. He found a restroom but he used the ladies room by mistake.
A fellow worker looking to find a way to rid the laundry from Patrick, accused him of touching her and using the ladies room. Patrick was let go.
The next day, The large washers broke down. Laundry that had been neatly folded was scattered around the room. The woman that accused Patrick had the worse day. Her work was inspected and it was found wanting. She lost her job due to her own laziness.
Patrick smiled and continued to enjoy his home’s laundry.