TYLER (KYTX) - A partnership between an array of East Texas companies continues to put disabled people in job positions that highlight their talents.
25 companies, including Suddenlink, Brookshire's and Walmart say hiring disabled employees makes their workplace more diverse and successful.
"Thank you for choosing Suddenlink, this is Adam. How may I assist you?"
If you've ever called for Suddenlink customer service, you may have talked to 27-year-old Adam Arciniega. He's been working in the call center for two and a half years now.
"Oh it's great! I love it. Love my job."
His beaming smile and kind voice mask a lot of the pain he's been through in his life.
"I was born with a brain tumor about the size of a small orange," Arciniega says.
Doctors discovered it when he was two and the surgery left him with severe visual impairments.
"I'm blind almost completely in my left eye. I have light perception but that's about it. In my right eye, I have 20/60 vision, not terrible, but I have no peripheral vision. So that all prevents me from doing certain things like driving," he says.
He also suffers from a seizure disorder but none of his disabilities hold him back.
"I was not supposed to live through the whole thing let alone be working and doing everything a normal person does."
He says working for a company that accommodates all his needs is a blessing. Suddenlink has adjusted his schedule, and also given him a large screen so he can see his work. Suddenlink is one of 25 local Partners in Progress companies that strive to hire people like Arciniega.
"They look past the disability and see what you can offer and they go out of their way to make sure they can bring that out of you," Arciniega says.
He hopes others with disabilities will reach out to the companies that are working hard to bridge a gap and bring out the best in those who have beaten the odds.
The Partners in Progress employers meet four times a year for an roundtable. The companies hear from organizations that support the disabled and learn how to better help them in their workplace environments. The next meeting is this Thursday, at the Hilton Garden Inn in Tyler.