SECURERELIABLE
DATA DESTRUCTION
BUSINESS SERVICES
SHELTERED WORKSHOP
NOTICE:

We’ve received an email approval from Kassidy Cornelison with the Oklahoma Department of Commerce that our industry and our company “are essential and form part of the critical infrastructure to Oklahoma’s economy”. With this news we plan to open with a limited crew on Monday, April 6. We’ll focus on our recurring and established customers first and begin to “triage” customers from that point; answering the messages of those that have called, etc. We will do our very best to take care of your needs.

Also, the customer dock drop process will change to “drive up and call us” @ (405) 348-4470 or ring bell and return to your car. Please remain in your vehicle. It would be helpful if your documents were in the trunk or bed of the vehicle verse the front/backseat of the vehicle, eliminating the need for our customer service staff to reach in and retrieve. Payment will be received while the customer is in their vehicle. Witnessing/observing your documents being destroyed will not be available at this time. Working on a plan to update this process as well. Stay tuned.

Once again, please bear with us as we ramp up to meet your secure shredding needs.


The Meadows Blog

Acceptance

Michael Crawley - Sunday, October 04, 2015

As human beings we have an overwhelming desire to be accepted. We want others to feel comfortable around us so that we can enjoy inclusion in all the areas of life that we believe are important. We each do our best to fit in and to not stand out in a way that draws negative attention to ourselves. Every one of us has a basic need to be valued and respected for who we are. 
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A Place of Courage

Michael Crawley - Monday, September 07, 2015

Each day as people drive past our parking lot they glance over, see our sign and notice our business. But they really have no way of knowing that something amazing is happening inside our building. Monday through Friday people with intellectual and physical challenges come to work at our facility and transform their lives.  
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The Dignity of Work

Michael Crawley - Sunday, August 23, 2015

The importance of jobs cannot be overstated because they provide the foundation for our nation’s economic stability. The more people that are working, the better off we are as a society. Employment empowers individuals by giving them the means to support themselves and by providing them with the ability to purchase the goods and services they need. That creates more jobs which drives productivity and innovation resulting in a healthy economy.  
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Leadership

Michael Crawley - Sunday, July 26, 2015

During the last two years there have been over 50 posts on this blog, totaling more than 75,000 words. Almost all of the writing has been about developmental disabilities and intellectual challenges, with a specific focus on the incredible men and women we employ. But now it is time to introduce you to the people in management who deserve a tremendous amount of credit for making the Meadows such a success. 
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The Joys of the Job

Michael Crawley - Sunday, July 05, 2015

Each day at the Meadows we witness courage, commitment and compassion. All of the extraordinary men and women we employ have developmental disabilities, and it is their desire to excel at their jobs, while dealing with serious challenges, that inspires us every day. In previous posts I have written at length about their strengths and abilities, as well as their achievements and accomplishments. I have attempted to emphasize their positive qualities without neglecting to address the issues that they face on a daily basis.   
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Family Caregivers

Michael Crawley - Monday, June 01, 2015

Each day millions of family caregivers in our nation quietly share their compassion, out of sight and unnoticed. These individuals are average people just like you and me who come from all walks of life. Yet each one is as special and unique as the situations they find themselves in. They are unsung heroes because they are living examples of kindness, generosity and unconditional love.  
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Words

Michael Crawley - Sunday, May 03, 2015

Words are the products of our thoughts, attitudes, opinions, beliefs and convictions. That is why the language we use has great power. Fortunately we always have the choice to speak in either a positive or negative manner. We can be outspoken or cautious. We can be abrasive or comforting. We can be accepting or judgmental, or we can choose to remain silent and say nothing at all.

Words can have far more influence than we realize because they convey feelings and emotions, both good and bad. People remember a sincere compliment or kind word for years, and the same is true for an insult or a harsh remark. All of us can remember a circumstance when we were on the receiving end of unflattering comments. We have each had things said about us that we didn’t deserve. As children we were called names that hurt. The fact that we still remember those words after so many years demonstrates their true power.

Language is critically important in the world of developmental disabilities. Certain words have the ability to shape decisions and to have a profound effect on the lives of the people we care about. When we use words like inclusive, diversity, respect, compassion, opportunity and equality we are projecting a positive view of individuals with intellectual challenges. They carry uplifting messages, and they convey a sense of belonging and community. These are words that build people up rather than making them feel inadequate. They support an individual’s dreams, aspirations and goals. They are the result of exceptional ideas that are turned into supports, programs and community involvement.

But too often when describing people with Down syndrome, autism, fragile X syndrome, fetal alcohol syndrome and many other types of disabilities we use language that is inaccurate or inappropriate. Sometimes it is thoughtlessly used as a form of shorthand. Words like “low functioning” and “retardation” have a dehumanizing effect when applied to people who have the right to be treated as equal members of society. That is why we should strive to use words that show respect and preserve dignity and avoid language that reflects intolerance or narrow-mindedness. Words of kindness, support and encouragement make another person feel valued and worthwhile. While language that is disrespectful can damage a person’s self-confidence and self-esteem.

Our choice of words in describing individuals with disabilities actually illustrates what kind of people we are. Because words communicate someone’s true feelings and opinions, disparaging language reveals our own prejudices and biases. We only have to listen to the words a person uses to figure out how they really feel about a particular subject. When someone chooses to describe another person as broken, defective or less than, they are unwittingly demonstrating their ignorance about people they do not know. They are letting their unfounded judgment and misconceptions cloud their thinking. They are hurting people by using language that objectifies them by stripping away their humanity.

We each know how painful it can be when someone reduces who we are and everything we’ve accomplished to just a few inconsiderate words. Every one of us has physical traits or personality quirks that could easily be ridiculed with demeaning language if someone so desired. We are all vulnerable in some way and the last thing we want is for someone to verbally attack us about an issue we have no control over. No one wants to be the butt of a cruel joke. No one wants to be put down for the way they look, the way they speak or the way they move. Each person is doing the very best they can to fit into a culture that is not always welcoming. The last thing they need are insensitive remarks that criticize their efforts.

Sadly words are sometimes used as a form of bullying. Aggressive or degrading language leveled at those who cannot respond appropriately or defend themselves is absolutely unacceptable. Unfortunately such behavior often finds strength in numbers as several individuals band together to tease or taunt a person who, in some superficial way, seems different. Using words to attack someone is a simple case of taking the easy way out. Instead of making the effort to get to know them, a bully attempts to make himself feel superior at their expense.

When dealing with those who have developmental disabilities we must weigh our words and carefully consider our language. Each man or woman has the right to be treated with dignity. There is never a reason to stereotype or tear a person down. People with intellectual challenges struggle throughout their lives not to be defined by limiting words. As children, their families are sometimes forced to confront language that hinders their child’s right to be treated fairly. It can be an issue that follows a person all of their lives.

On the other hand, when we speak to people with developmental disabilities in a positive way we can have a meaningful influence by letting them know that someone cares about them and believes in them. When a person has been told repeatedly that they will never be able to accomplish something, even before they’ve had the opportunity to try, being encouraged with supportive inspiring language can have a dramatic effect by giving them the necessary confidence to attempt challenges that can transform their lives. Our words have the ability to lift people up, they possess the power to have a significant impact because they often represent life changing ideas and concepts. They are the building blocks that lay the foundation for how society perceives those that we care about.

People with developmental disabilities deserve to hear words of caring and support. They deserve to hear words of compassion and acceptance. They deserve to hear language that treats them with respect as equals.

We should always choose our words wisely because they reveal who we really are.

 

 
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Family

Michael Crawley - Sunday, April 19, 2015

For most people, there is nothing more important in life than family. The benefits of the parent child relationship cannot be stressed enough. Family provides the nurturing support that every person needs, but it is particularly crucial for children with intellectual challenges. The unconditional love they receive from a parent gives them permission to be themselves. They receive encouragement, understanding and most of all complete acceptance. The single most valuable thing a child with a developmental disability can be given is the loving support of their family.  
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Disability Bias

Michael Crawley - Sunday, April 05, 2015

There are many forms of bias that permeate our society. We have all seen the studies that indicate that people who are tall, thin, pretty, handsome, and have outgoing personalities are more likely to get a job, a promotion or have better success finding a mate. However, none of those attributes actually tell us anything about what kind of person they are. They do not describe their character, their integrity, their work ethic or their generosity. They do not tell us if the person is trustworthy, honest, forgiving or compassionate. They are simply unimportant characteristics that society incorrectly places great value on.  
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The Challenge of Cancer

Michael Crawley - Friday, March 20, 2015

The word cancer can strike terror in our lives at any moment. It is a word that brings untold grief but also unbelievable courage into our world. The devastation that this single word can wreck on families is almost indescribable, and yet the people who battle its effects so bravely can inspire us with their strength, resolve and determination to overcome it.  
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LATEST NEWS


Dreams Come True

Michael Crawley - Tuesday, March 10, 2020

At 6:00 a.m. the alarm goes off. Hoping to put off the inevitable, you reach over and push the snooze button. However, you realize you’re not going back to sleep because your mind is quickly consumed by all of the reasons you don’t want to go to work.  
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The Business of Trust

Michael Crawley - Tuesday, February 18, 2020

In the business world, long-term success can be elusive, but the Meadows has been able to achieve it because of just one word: TRUST. 
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A Meaningful Job

Michael Crawley - Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Employment is a crucial part of every person’s life. Obviously, the financial reward for working is necessary to sustain ourselves - but, in reality, being employed is much more than that.  
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A New Decade of Service

Michael Crawley - Tuesday, January 07, 2020

Although there is much debate over whether 2020 or 2021 is the start of the next decade, for our purposes, we are going to look out over the next ten years starting January 1, 2020. 
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The Truth

Michael Crawley - Tuesday, December 03, 2019

It is an undeniable fact that human beings have always been willing to pass judgment and jump to conclusions about people who they believe are different from them. Unfortunately, this is particularly true when it comes to individuals with developmental disabilities.

These negative perceptions occur because we allow our emotions to guide our thinking instead of seeking the truth which can require effort and an open mind. Consequently, we are quick to label people with challenges and to categorize them for our own convenience. We fail to understand that no two people are the same and that each individual has their own personality and character. But we are, unfortunately, eager to form an opinion about their life without knowing a thing about them.


Here are five common situations that we are all familiar with. In each case, you encounter a person you think cannot possibly be a productive member of society.

You are shopping at the mall when two individuals walk past you. Suddenly one of them collapses with a seizure. You watch in shock as the convulsions run their course. Certain that the person lives in terror with the knowledge that a seizure could occur at any moment, you feel great sympathy for them. You assume their quality of life is compromised and that because of their epilepsy they cannot accomplish anything of significance.

***

You are eating at a restaurant when a person comes in with another adult. You can’t help but stare as they follow their hostess to their table. The individual has partial paralysis on one side of their body and there is visible scarring that indicates that they have endured multiple surgeries. The person walks with a pronounced limp, and you can see that their arm is immobile. You can’t imagine how they make it through the day living with those kinds of issues.

***

You are waiting to check out at the store. The individual in front of you is trying to communicate with the cashier, but their speech is extremely difficult to understand. The people behind you become impatient as the person struggles to convey their thoughts to the cashier who just wants them to move along and get out of the way. You feel great pity for the individual as you wonder what kind of “affliction” could’ve caused their inability to communicate clearly.

***

You are in line to buy a ticket for a movie when an individual standing with their mother becomes agitated about something. Very quickly the person’s behavior escalates and they begin to yell as they lose control of their emotions. Their mother tries to help them calm down, but she is not successful in getting the person to relax. You and others watch with silent disapproval as you harshly judge her lack of parenting skills for allowing this to happen in public.

***

You are waiting for an elevator. The doors open and a person carefully steps out pushing a walker. Their balance is precarious and their legs seem stiff and rigid. It is obvious that they would not be able to walk without the assistive device. You suspect their life is limited in countless ways because of their lack of mobility, and you can’t help thinking it would be better for them to stop trying to walk altogether and to just use a wheelchair.

What do these five people have in common?...... Yes, they each have a disability. Yes, it affects certain areas of their lives, and yes, their diagnosis is often used to unfairly define them. But what might surprise you is one other thing that they have in common. Something positive. Something meaningful. Something that deserves to be acknowledged.

All of these individuals are successfully employed at the Meadows.

Along with almost forty other men and women with intellectual challenges, these five individuals work each day at a variety of jobs that not only provide them with a hard-earned paycheck but also build self-esteem and self-confidence. They learn vocational skills, but, even more importantly, they are given every opportunity to reach their personal potential.

But when these same individuals go out in public, people rush to judge them based on nothing more than appearances. That kind of narrow-mindedness is unfair and unjust.

Obviously, there is an important lesson that must be learned.

When we encounter a person with an intellectual, physical or emotional challenge, we should treat them just like we would anyone else. They deserve to be understood and accepted for who they are as a person. They deserve to be treated with dignity. They deserve to be respected.

The men and women we proudly employ are perfect examples of what people with developmental disabilities can achieve in a positive work setting that offers support and encouragement.

The truth is simple. Every person, regardless of what their challenges happen to be, has the right to live their best life.

That is what our employees do every day.


 
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Why The Meadows Matters

Michael Crawley - Monday, November 11, 2019
 
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It Is Not Too Late!

Michael Crawley - Thursday, October 24, 2019

The Meadows annual Walk-A-Thon, held on Saturday, October 12th, was a tremendous success, and we want to thank everyone who participated.  
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Why We Are Not Hiring

Michael Crawley - Sunday, February 25, 2018

People frequently contact the Meadows to see if we are currently hiring individuals with intellectual challenges. Unfortunately, as much as we wish we could, the answer is NO. 
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The Men and Women of the Meadows

Michael Crawley - Sunday, February 18, 2018

The mission of our organization is to provide employment and vocational training for adults with developmental disabilities as well as other intellectual and physical challenges. 
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Physical Challenges

Michael Crawley - Sunday, February 11, 2018

For those of you who are familiar with the Meadows, you know that on this blog we focus primarily on intellectual challenges. That is because each of the men and women we employ has an IQ of 70 or less, which is the state’s criteria of determining a developmental disability. 
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The Meadows
Center for Opportunity

1000 South Kelly
Edmond, Oklahoma
73003-6081

phone: 405.348.4470
fax: 405.340.5395