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What do you all think?
Old 11-22-2007, 06:59 PM
 
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I figure there's nothing I can do, but this is still bothering me.

My brother (31), who lives in a group home for mentally disabled adults, got sick on a trip at a Rocky Mudd store in Kansas with his house buddies. He vomited on merchandise in a store. He felt embarrassed and confused when this happened to the point he was crying. The store manager wasn't very nice towards him, and took his name and address from the group leader. My brother later got a bill for $280 for merchandise ruined. His house manager made him pay it out of his SSI check and Christmas savings so now he doesn't have spending money for Christmas and he's been further upset. I will just give him money to buy presents for my sister and such, but I just feel badly about how this situation was handled.

I understand the 'break it you bought it' policy, but don't companies get to write things off for things that are accidently messed up by customers. Not that my brother would have thought about it or even wanted the stuff, but he had to pay $280 for stuff that the company didn't give him and probably will still write off.

I'm just upset that this happened at all and wanted to talk about it. I think it's just worse because it happened to a person who doesn't really understand what happened anyway. All he knows is that he got sick, got yelled at, and had to give up his Christmas money and allowance for December. Do you think there's anything I can do from here?


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That is horrible !!!!!
Old 11-22-2007, 07:05 PM
 
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I can't believe that the manager didn't have enough common sense to handle the situation better. I'm sure that they are writing it off and it's not like thast the damage done was on purpose. I feel bad for him that he lost all of the money that he was going to use and was probably proud to use his own money to buy for others. I.m very sorry that this is how he and your family have to start off the holidays.
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I googled
Old 11-22-2007, 07:17 PM
 
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"Rocky Mudd store in Kansas" but I didn't find any info.
Do you have the address/phone number of the store and the name of the manager?

I wonder if there was something your brother's house manager could have/should have done on behalf of your brother?

I agree, I think the situation was handled very badly (where's their Christmas spirit?) and I hope someone here can tell you the best route to take.
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oh my
Old 11-22-2007, 07:18 PM
 
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Is this a national chain....I've never heard of it. If so, I would try to find the main office and write to them about the incident and how it was handled. I don't think they would want bad publicity so close to Christmas.
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Old 11-22-2007, 07:20 PM
 
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Oh no! I feel so bad for your brother-especially since he doesn't understand why he had to give up his money. I don't know if there's anything you can do, but one thing I would do is write a letter or call the store manager's manager. If anything I would let this person know how your brother was treated. I would definitely explain that your brother has special needs and didn't understand what happened. If anything that manager should get a slap on the hand for how he treated your brother.

I'm sure they could write it off or at least part of it! Poor guy.

I googled the name of the store and didn't find anything. Is it a one off store, or is it bigger?


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This is really ticking me off!
Old 11-22-2007, 07:21 PM
 
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Yes, stores write things off! I can't believe that they would do this to someone like your brother. I am all for accountability, but when a person has limitations I definitely think there needs to be a little compassion. I think a letter to the store manager and the corporate office is a good place to start. I am so sorry that your brother had to go through this event. I hope that he and you will find a way to make this holiday season extra special!!
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Also,
Old 11-22-2007, 07:28 PM
 
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is the house manager allowed to tell your brother how he spends his SSI money???
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Old 11-22-2007, 07:39 PM
 
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Absolutely contact the manager's boss and explain the situation. This just isn't right. He's lucky to have you in his corner!
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Old 11-22-2007, 08:20 PM
 
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what kind of person would do something like this? that is really sad, I would definitely write a letter to the main office. I hope your brother understands that he didn't do anything wrong.
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I would be furious!
Old 11-22-2007, 08:26 PM
 
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The store manager was wrong, and so was the group leader. No way should he have had to pay for something he didn't get to keep. I would write the franchise and tell them what happened. I think I would also have a talk with his case manager. Sometimes the people who work in those group homes are very compassionate, and sometimes they aren't. This is very sad!


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Old 11-22-2007, 09:20 PM
 
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I can't believe that! It is so insensitive! My DH- who is peacefully snoozing away upstairs- is a case manager for a company that provides services for mentally/physically disabled people. I am definitely going to ask him about this. We all know perfectly well that sometimes merchandise gets damaged accidently and that the company writes off the cost. That is ridiculous! Poor guy- what a way to start the Christmas season off! Will let you know if DH has any ideas about what can be done.

Can you give any other info about the store? I googled it too and found nothing. If nothing else, your PT friends can start an email/letter campaign to the store!
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How mean
Old 11-22-2007, 09:43 PM
 
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Stores have insurance for stuff like this - how cruel. If you give us the address maybe we can write some letters to the manager?? Praying for your brother's comfort. . .
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Store Manager woes
Old 11-22-2007, 10:00 PM
 
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What a sad story! I feel so sorry for your brother. He is so lucky to have a compassionate sister like you to help him out. The store manager was so out of line as your brother couldn't help himself. These things do happen. Stores have a overhang (or whatever it's called) to handle these incidents. Also, your brother's house manager should have tried to settle the matter in another way instead of punishing him by making him pay with his SSI and Christmas money.
I would definitely write or call the main office and explain everything that you told us. There has to be some other more compassionate way to handle this, instead of punishing your brother for something he had no control over.
One more thing, a couple of weeks ago I was in an "English Gardens" store. I was standing in line waiting to pay for a few items in my cart. As I took out a beautiful ornament costing around $20.00 it slipped out of my hand and broke into a million pieces. I had never done this before and was so embarassed. I thought I would have to pay for it and would have if they requested it. The girl told me not to worry that this happens more times than we realize. Another clerk immediately went back to get me a new one.
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Old 11-23-2007, 05:04 AM
 
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My dad and his friends own a company that runs group homes. Not only do you need to call the store and speak to a REGIONAL MANAGER (not hte store manager) but you need to call the company that staffs the group home your brother is living in. The laws may vary from state to state, but in PA the house managers can not tell a resident how to spend their money.
What others have said is exactly true, the store has insurance that they can write off damaged money. When merchandise is damaged due to a customer being maliscious-they will have the cusotmer pay for it. When merchandise is damaged due to an accident (such as your brother's case) the store gets to write it off and gets the price they paid (not the retail price) to replace the stock. The manager charged your brother the retail price and will most likely file a claim for the damaged products. It wouldn't surprise me at all if the store manager pocketed that $280 your brother paid. This is why you need to call the regional manager. Not only was it an accident, but due to your brother's disability he didn't understand the situation.
If contacting the regional manager doesn't do you any good. Contact the local TV station-most have a consumer advocate type feature-where the TV station will contact the company on your behalf and try and resolve the problem (it will be broadcast on the news, so they are usually successful due to the bad PR).
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bull!!
Old 11-23-2007, 05:34 AM
 
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How rude and insensitive of this store. You are also absolutely right about wondering why your brother was not given the "ruined" merchandise. If he had to pay for that, the stuff is his and should have been given to him. What type of store was this? You should share the name with the public and you should also contact the store owner, explain the situation and ask them what their policy is, as you are puzzled to why he was not given the stuff that was destroyed by him? I would also let them know that this was not a very kind thing to do and seems like a company could claim these items under their insurance. It also seems like case manager of your brothers didn't do the best thing that he could do either. He should have protected your brother more and made this situation less of an issue. I am so sorry, of course you are very upset!! Please don't let this go without some complaints to the store owner. Did they make him pay tax on these items!! Your poor brother did not deserve this, and you are such a sweet sister to be his advocate at times like these. This really makes me mad.
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Just out of curiousity
Old 11-23-2007, 07:18 AM
 
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Why didn't the group leader stick up for him? Did you actually see the bill from the store? Not that I don't want to be trusting, but just wondering if it could be a way for the group leader to be getting a little extra cash? Like a previous poster mentioned, I would check into the state laws that govern your brother's group home to see if indeed they can make him pay. Sounds kind of fishy to me.
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follow the advice
Old 11-23-2007, 07:24 AM
 
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given, something shaky is going on here and you don't have to take it! I do not like that home supervisor taking charge of your brothers money. Disabled people are often used by people who are supposed to be looking after them, this is why there is usually a policy to manage how they spend their money.

Don't take this. Demand a full refund for your brother plus an apology. Get in that managers face or find a big guy to do it. This makes me so mad I want to fly out there and get in his face too. I can write a letter though...

Don't forget to alert the news people. This is JUST the type of story this store should not want to get out. I would not shop there after reading this.

good luck, don't delay in taking action, and please keep us posted.
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Old 11-23-2007, 07:29 AM
 
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Ok DH is awake now! He is outraged on your behalf. As I said in my earlier post, he is a case manager here in central NC. He had a few things to say about this situation, unfortunately most of them are unprintable. First, unless your brother or his family has signed a power of attorney giving the group home control over his finances, it is AGAINST THE LAW for them to tell your brother how to spend his money. (For example, one of the men my husband serves is adult, lives in a group home. He likes to go to strip bars. It drives everyone completely crazy, but they cannot tell him that he can't spend his money that way). Second, if the store insists that your brother pay for the stuff, the GROUP HOME should absorb the cost. They most likely a fund that covers such issues. If your brother paid for the merchandise and did not receive it, the store STOLE money from your brother! (all caps are at the request of my DH).

Please, please, please contact the company that manages your brother's group home and the store. This is at the very least, extremely mean and at the most against the law. Please update us if you find anything out. My DH and I are all kinds of ticked about this.
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Wow!
Old 11-23-2007, 07:51 AM
 
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This is just terrible. You have received a lot of great advice. I just wanted to add a couple things. If he had to pay for it, I would ask the group leader for the receipt. If there is no receipt, then there is definately something fishy going on. I would write a demand letter to the company also. You want to have a paper trail, so if it needs to go further (court), you have some ammunition. I also like the idea of going to the news station. Be sure to tell that to the comapany AND to the group home leader. Plus, if this was an outing that was sponsored by the group home, THEY should be paying for it, not the individual, since it was an accident.
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Old 11-23-2007, 05:44 PM
 
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I haven't read all the post yet, but I used to be a DD Program Dir, Hab Specialist II, and a QDDP (not sure what it would be called now with all the "name" changes) for various programs both with private and under MH/DD/SA systems in NC. I left the MH system several years ago though. But I would never have used or allowed a group home manager to utilize resident funds without the proper consent from the resident, family, or guardian. Not only that, if the manager didn't feel qualified to deal with addressing the issue with the store manager, then the case manager or Admin. should have been contacted. Those were your brother's funds and no one (except those with legal authority) have the right to take them from him. There are strict guidelines for managing resident funds. Anyone violating them should be dealt with for abuse of those resident funds.

I am outraged at how both the store manager and group home manager handled this. That store manager's supervisor (regional mgr maybe) should be contacted, as should the supervisor for that group home manager. First, I'd want to see the resident account ledger and verify funds were actually given to the store. There should be both documentation and a receipted statement to verify any expense paid. Then I'd push for the store to reimburse your brother and the group home manager to be held accountable for misuse of resident funds.

Can you get info on how to contact that store or the regional manager? I'd certainly be willing to write them and express concern about the handling of situations such as this by their store manager. That is if you can verify the person at the group home actually paid the money to the store. Unless proof is obtained that the store actually received the money, I'd put some pressure on the group home manager.

I feel so bad for your brother dealing with this and not understanding why his money was taken. Even if he knows "he got sick and had to pay", he probably doesn't really comprehend it.
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I agree
Old 11-23-2007, 07:28 PM
 
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As a former residential staff/teacher... I totally agree with all of the above posts!!!!!

Please let us know what you decide to do and what happens!!!!!!!!!!!
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That store manager was and is a LOSER!
Old 11-24-2007, 08:16 AM
 
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I am sitting here reading this as I am getting ready for our annual Special Olympic Christmas Party next weekend and shaking my head. We serve over 100 athletes in my area and it saddend me to think of any one of them being in this type of situation. They want to do right and will trust what the adults around them tell them to do, then some idiot takes advantage of them. I wonder if a child had gotten sick would the parent had to pay for the items? Probably not. The store manager probably knew your brother could not stand up for himself so he took advantage of the situation.

Please give us the contact information to that store. There is a thread of ticked off teachers out for justice.
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Yes
Old 11-24-2007, 08:57 AM
 
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please post here the name of the manager, store address, etc. we will write letters and make phone calls on your brother's behalf.
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Old 11-24-2007, 09:01 AM
 
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This is really bad! I can't believe someone would be punished for getting sick to their stomachs. Who does that on purpose in a store???
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