When corporate policy (aka greed) overrules human decency, clearly, the system is flawed.
Most people are fired from their jobs for being rude to customers or failing to meet their obligations. A 77-year-old veteran who worked as a toll booth employee in Florida for nearly three decades was fired because he was compassionate. Where is the justice?
In 2015, Vladislav ‘Sam’ Samsonov of Boca Grande paid a driver’s $5 toll out of his own pocket when he realized he undercharged them. According to NBC-2 News, he just felt like it was the right thing to do. “In my eyes there was no crime committed, I just helped somebody out,” said Samsonov.
This wasn’t the first time the 77-year-old had used some of his own money to pay others’ fees. He said it was something he did from time to time. To the military veteran, the job was about the children — not money. “After 29 years, you can’t help it. I gave children suckers 20 years ago. Now I’m giving those children suckers for their children,” said Samsonov.
Once his employers found out he had paid the $5 toll fee, however, he was reprimanded. The authority offered him two days a week instead of five, which he declined. “If I can’t be trusted for five days, how can I be trusted for two days?” Samsonov said.
Shortly after Samsonov’s story made the news, support poured in from around the country. Business owner Blanche Vedette, who saw Samsonov several times per week, told the press her commute wasn’t the same anymore. “He would always give dog bones to the dogs and say hi to them. Ask how our daughter was doing. He was like extended family,” said Vedette. “I just want him to know how much we really do care about him and how he will be missed.”
Commented Jason Rice, a frequent customer, “I’m shocked by the whole firing of him, especially for what it was. It just doesn’t seem right to me at all.”
After Samsonov received people’s heartfelt messages, he was reportedly “blown away” by the compliments. “Makes me feel good, makes me want to cry. But bite your tongue and you’ll be ok,” he said at the time.
Samsonov never apologized for paying the $5 fee. He maintains that he did nothing wrong — even if it is against the company’s policy to pay for other people’s fees.
Though the incident occurred two years ago, it is still quite relevant. Until society puts people’s well-being and common decency ahead of profit, the system will remain flawed. Do you agree or disagree? Please comment below and share this news!
I am Luke Miller, content manager at Truth Theory and creator of Potential For Change. I like to blend psychology and spirituality to help you create more happiness in your life.Grab a copy of my free 33 Page Illustrated eBook- Psychology Meets Spirituality- Secrets To A Supercharged Life You Control Here