An autistic man in Rhode Island worked at Applebee’s for nearly a year without receiving a paycheck.
Caleb Dyl, of Portsmouth, found the job at the Middletown restaurant through the state-funded Resources for Human Development program. What started out as a job-training initiative was supposed to culminate in Dyl being hired in August 2014, according to WPRI.
“We were told by RHD that Applebee’s was going to hire him, and he was going to get paid,” Dyl’s father, Bob, told the station. In fact, Dyl’s parents said they signed their son up for direct deposit and filled out a W-4 form, but the money never came.
The 21-year-old reportedly worked at Applebee’s part-time, three days a week, four hours each day, according to WPRI.
Teens and young adults with disabilities are sometimes targeted for abuse by malicious peers, but co-workers and others in the training program spoke highly of Dyl, identifying him as a “productive worker” and saying they were lucky to have him.
Dyl’s father said, however, that he had told RHD several times that his son was not being paid for his work, but Eleanor Clancy, Applebee’s regional director of operations, said the company didn’t find out about the discrepancy until after WPRI contacted it.
“RHD never contacted us,” Clancy said. “The first we heard of this was when (WPRI) called. But this is on us. We obviously feel terrible.”
The restaurant is now trying to rectify the issue by sending Dyl a check for 166 hours worth of work. The problem is that Dyl and his family claim that the man worked closer to 350 hours over the course of the year.