Fred’s Head from APH, a Blindness Blog

Fred’s Head, offered by the American Printing House for the Blind, contains tips, techniques, tutorials, in-depth articles, and resources for and by blind or visually impaired people. Our blog is named after the legendary Fred Gissoni, renowned for answering a seemingly infinite variety of questions on every aspect of blindness.

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Thursday, February 25, 2010

Targets of Schemes and Scams

by Donna J. Jodhan

We are living in a world where schemes and scams continue to spiral out of control. There was a time when one could probably venture to say that seniors and persons who are blind or sight impaired were probably relatively safe from schemes and scams; but not anymore and as we continue to deal with hard economic times, you are going to see that schemers and scammers are not going to discriminate when they choose their targets. Many would probably be shocked if they really knew how often seniors and blind and sight impaired persons fall to those seedy individuals with their get rich quick schemes and scams with smoking mirrors but I am hear to tell them that this is no shocker. As a matter of fact, seniors and blind persons are probably the favourite targets of many schemers and scammers.

There was a time when Humanity generally had a conscience but not anymore. The thing to remember is this! There is no age limit to the typical schemer or scammer. They can be young as six and even as old as 86; a child, adult, male or female. Why, a few months ago there was a senior lady in our condominium building who managed to scam over $1000 out of tenants. She did this by knocking on doors and asking for money to help her pay for her medication. Schemes and scams can be anything ranging from an innocent phone call or email to a knock at your door, a solicitation in the mail to a gentle request for help while walking in the mall, or practically anything.

I have consulted my panel on why they think most schemers and scammers would want to target seniors and blind and sight impaired persons and the unanimous verdict was as follows:

Seniors, blind persons, and the disabled as a whole are probably two of the most vulnerable groups of our society. They are naturally timid and uncertain. They are seen to be easy targets because of their inability to see. The blind person in particular may not be considered to be very savvy when it comes to being able to spot schemes and scams very easily but this is rapidly changing.

What many schemers and scammers are very unaware of is that more and more seniors and persons who are blind are becoming savvier when it comes to being able to spot schemes and schemers, and scams and scammers. True it is that they will continue to remain physically weaker through a reality of life but we believe that as time rolls by, schemers and scammers are going to have a tougher time finding seniors and blind and sight impaired persons to be their victims. I would like to suggest that someone takes up the challenge to start organizing classes for seniors, the blind and sight impaired, and the disabled whereby they can help them to learn more about schemes and schemers, and scams and scammers. Are there any takers?

I'm Donna J. Jodhan your friendly accessibility advocate wishing you a terrific day. If you'd like to learn more about me, then you can visit some of my blog spots at:
Donna Jodhan! Advocating accessibility for all: http://www.donnajodhan.blogspot.com
Weekly Saturday postings on issues of accessibility: http://www.sterlingcreations.ca/blog/blog.html
blogs on various issues and answers to consumers concerns: http://www.sterlingcreations.com/businessdesk.htm

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